Friday, June 11, 2010

The Republican Party by David Barton

Also well documented is the fact that African Americans made their earliest and some of their most significant political and civil rights gains while affiliated with the Republican Party and that progress is still continuing in this generation.

Consider the Texas election in which African American Ron Kirk, former mayor of Dallas, was running for a U. S. Senate seat. When Kirk lost that election, voices across the nation asserted that the South was still too racist to elect a minority on a statewide ballot. What they failed to mention was that in that same election, three African Americans were elected to statewide offices on the very same statewide ballot as Kirk but those three were elected as Republicans rather than Democrats. Apparently, Texas became the first State in American history to elect three black Americans to statewide office, but since they were all Republicans, that story simply was not reported. In that same election cycle, black Americans were elected to statewide office in other States as well, including a black Lieutenant Governor in Ohio and another in Maryland both as Republicans.

An important point is illustrated by these recent elections: in Democratically controlled States, rarely are African Americans elected statewide; And most African American Democratic Members of Congress usually are elected only from minority districts that is, Democratic districts where minority voters make the majority rather than where there is a Democratic majority of white voters. On the other hand, African American Republicans are usually elected statewide in Republican States or in congressional districts with large white majorities such as when J. C. Watts was elected to Congress as a Republican in a district with only 9 percent African American voters.

Perhaps this explains why Frederick Douglass, a century ago, reminded black Americans: “For colored voters, the Republican Party is the ship, all else is the sea.” 463 The political history of African Americans has often proved Douglass right.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.