There are a lot of "themes" to this election. The year of the Republican woman. The Tea Party vs. the elitists. The conservative grassroots vs. the establishment Republicans. Small government conservatives vs. big government Democrats. The American people vs. liberalism. However, there's one mini-trend that has been largely overlooked: There were a surprising number of black Republican candidates running this year. Initially, there were 32 candidates in the hunt, which was the largest field of black Republicans running for the House since Reconstruction. However, many of those candidates lost their primaries and so now we're down to 14 candidates.
Still, this wasn't supposed to happen. After all, we have the first black President in the White House and he's a Democrat. Moreover, he has a 90% approval rating with black Americans and there doesn't seem to be a Democrat in this country who can string together more than 4-5 sentences at a time without claiming Republicans hate black Americans. Nevertheless, we're about to see the first black Republicans in the House since J.C. Watts retired back in 2003.
That's no small matter and if Republicans are smart, they'll keep building on that momentum. Colin Powell and Condi Rice rose to prominence under the Bush administration. Pundits like Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, Star Parker, and Larry Elder have made a name for themselves in the conservative movement. Back in 2006, rather famously, we had Lynn Swann, Michael Steele, and Ken Blackwell running for office. Now, we've got Michael Steele as the RNC Chair and we have more black Republicans about to be elected to Congress.
That's one of the reasons the cries of "racism" no longer work and it's also helping to give the GOP its best chance to reach black Americans in a generation. If we could get to the point where even a third of black Americans were regularly voting Republican, which is much more plausible than you might think, we could start to shift the country's political landscape back to the Right. Of course, to make that happen, we're going to need more visible black leaders in the Republican Party. Sending Tim Scott, Allen West, and Ryan Frazier to Congress would be a good start on that effort.
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