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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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January 3rd, 2014
06:10 PM ET

Roundtable: Does the GOP have a 'Duck Dynasty' problem?

(CNN) - The cast of "Duck Dynasty" is back at work making duck calls and pulling pranks on each other, shooting their fifth season of the hit reality show for A&E.

The cable network reinstated family patriarch Phil Robertson after suspending him over comments he made to GQ magazine suggesting that African Americans in the deep South were happier before the civil rights era, and arguing that homosexuality is a sin.

The family is also lending its name to a new brand of fire arms.

"We hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal. And they've been endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. Those rights are rights that no government can take from you. To live, be free, and pursue happiness. You know what makes me happy ladies and gentleman? To blow a mallard duck's head smooth off," Phil Robertson says in an ad.

The cause to have A&E reinstate Robertson was taken up by conservative Republicans from Sen. Ted Cruz, to Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.

"That's what's so great about America. You don't have to agree with everyone but everyone has a right to their opinion, especially a religious opinion," Jindal told Fox News.

Now that the dynasty clan is back in action, can this be written off as just another media flap? Salon.com political reporter Brian Beutler argues that the controversy is the most important political debate of the year, revealing a problem that haunts the Republican Party.

Beutler, Republican strategist Kristin Soltis-Anderson, and chief Washington correspondent for Yahoo! News Olivier Knox take aim at the continuing political implications of "Duck Dynasty."

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