McKee: First Black President ‘Wearing Thin’ With African-Americans

This interesting article came across my desk this week. Another prospective . . . FYI

By Todd Beamon

President Barack Obama is losing favor among many African-Americans because “the fact that you have a first black president is kind of wearing thin,” consultant Clarence V. McKee told Newsmax.TV in an exclusive interview.

“They’re realizing that because he’s got a black skin, that doesn’t do anything to help the green color of their money in their pockets,” McKee, a lawyer, government relations consultant, and president of McKee Communications Inc. in Coral Gables, Fla., said. “Blacks are realizing that the Messiah or ‘black Jesus,’ as David Axelrod called him — does not have necessarily a halo over his head to help them economically.

“You’ve got a 14 percent black unemployment rate, 12 percent Hispanic unemployment rate. If you get into the kids and the young people, it’s up to 50 percent. Net worth of blacks and the middle class is being destroyed, black business people being hurt.

“So the fact that you have a first black president is kind of wearing thin because it’s not so much that he was the first black president, the fact is that he’s black and a liberal. A black conservative gets clobbered by the black liberal establishment. Whether it’s Herman Cain, Condi Rice — and so it’s not that he’s just black, he’s a black liberal. We have a lot of opposition to that from the NAACP, who are trying to prop him up.”

McKee said Republicans should focus on issues and themes: “As George W. Bush had said, ‘the soft bigotry of low expectations.’ Nixon and Reagan all had a theme, whether it be family or whether it be neighborhood revitalization. Republicans — in the last eight, nine months — I haven’t heard a thing like that. They’ve got to key in on issues.”

While Mitt Romney has hired Tara Wall — a former journalist, Republican National Committee senior adviser, George W. Bush appointee to handle outreach to African-Americans — “You’ve got to let people know you care about them,” McKee said.

He cited an example from the Mississippi primaries in March: “Charles Evers, the brother of the slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers, was so upset at how the Republican candidates did not pay any attention to the black vote that the last that I heard, he was going to resign from the Mississippi Republican Executive Committee.

“You cannot come in four weeks before a key election, say, ‘Blacks: Vote for me,’ when you haven’t been there in the last five to six years. So you’ve got to go in and show that you care about people. You have to ask for their vote and then have issues that relate to them.

“That’s the key thing, that they actually show an interest. But if you totally ignore people, they say, Why should we?”

The GOP must court African-American voters, McKee said.

“If the present situation continues — and by 2042 or 2050, the Census Bureau says we’re going to have a majority-minority country — and if the Republican Party continues to be a basically white party, and the Democratic Party continues to be a brown-and-black and female party, you’re getting very close to the old post-South Africa apartheid-type of black party, white party [system] — and that’s not good.

“You’re going to have a growing racialization of a political process. That’s not helpful for anybody.

“So the Republican Party has to get out and get black and brown votes. The Democratic Party, if it wants to survive, is going to have to get some white folks and white males — otherwise, you’re going to have these two parties drifting further and further apart. The growing racialization of the parties.”

But this wooing must be strategic, McKee said: “Generally speaking, if you look at the Southern primaries recently, the Republican black vote was no more than 3 percent . . . but in Alabama, Mississippi, you have the highest black populations — we were only getting 2 percent of the black vote.

“That shows that the Republican Party has a lot to do to get the black vote — and not just the black vote, black independents, and black Republicans.

“Don’t even try to go after the masses of black votes. If you look at the key elections when Republicans took the White House — Reagan, Reagan-Bush, George W., and Bush 41 — consistently, there was about 8½ to 11 percent black vote. Consistently. And about 31 percent Hispanic vote.

“Now, in this upcoming election, Republicans are going to have to get that lousy 4 to 5 percent vote they got up to 8 or 9 or 10 percent — and the Hispanic vote up to 30 percent.”

And, echoing former presidential candidate Cain, McKee said both parties are taking advantage of African-Americans.

“Blacks are the only voter group in this country that go to the political poker table,” McKee said, referring to elections. “And the dealer deals the cards. And what do the blacks do? ‘Here’s my hope card’ — therefore you know where they’re going to vote. Irish, women, Hispanics, you don’t know where they’re going. That’s why everyone is going for them.

“So the Republicans say: Why should I waste my money when they’re not going to vote for me anyway? I can put more resources elsewhere — and that’s what a lot of Republicans think. Democrats say, We don’t have to worry about those folks. They’re going to vote for us anyway.”

Citing such rising black Republicans as Fla. Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll, Rep. Timothy Eugene “Tim” Scott in South Carolina, Fla. Rep. Allen B. West and Utah Mayor Mia Love — who is challenging longtime Democratic Rep. Jim Matheson — McKee sees a bigger role for African-Americans in the GOP’s future. He said: “What the problem is, if you look at television and you look at the newspapers, who do you see? Black democrats. The [Congressional] Black Caucus, the NAACP — all of these groups.

“The only voice that blacks are hearing, politically, are from black Democrats who now have a vested interest in the Democratic Party establishment. So they get black people’s votes and white liberal money to stay in office forever. They’re almost like federal judges: It’s a lifetime appointment, until you start getting some more conservative blacks running against them.

“But the Republican Party has to support Republican candidates. Interesting [as] this is, you don’t see any black-elected officials being elected by white democratic constituencies . . . We haven’t promoted ourselves enough.

“We have to groom candidates, so Allen’s a good example. And you know why he’s good? Because the black caucus and the liberals attack him constantly. They’re scared to death of black conservatives.”

McKee acknowledged that blacks are often criticized because they are Republican. He said, “I’m used to it. I know that.” This creates a “silent black majority,” he added.

“In New York City one time, somebody saw me on CSPAN . . . and he said, ‘I don’t agree with you, brother, but you really made some good points.’ I’m talking about a silent black majority. They’re not going to tell everybody, I’m voting for a Republican.

“But we just want them to go into the booth — whether they’re Democrat, independent or what — and vote. They’re not going to tell anybody. That’s why some of these exit polls are skewed; they’re kind of wrong.

“But they have to preach the message. It will resonate quietly.”

Article ariginally posted HERE

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