September 27th, 2007
12:30 PM ET
11 years ago

Commentary: Why is the GOP scared of black voters?

Watch Roland Martin sound off about the GOP and black voters in this clip from CNN Pipeline.

(CNN) - That's right, I said it. And I mean it.

The GOP as a whole is completely scared of black voters, and the actions by the front-runners for the party's 2008 nomination show they are continuing the same silly political games the party has played for years.

Oh, don't bother tossing out the appointments of Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice as secretary of state by Bush. Yes, they are African-American. But I'm speaking of the party.

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soundoff (80 Responses)
  1. Richard, MS

    I thought That Roland martin is a smart guy but today I can say he is biased. I do not believe that GOP is scared of black voters. There are sensible black voters who are not in the media, who will always vote for GOP including myself. I do not need Martin to tell me to vote to Democrats. I will never will neither my friends. Have a life....

    September 26, 2007 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  2. xtina - chicago IL

    Mr. Martin, I don't think the GOP is "afraid" of anything. I just think that there are too many debates. I mean c'mon, every DAY there's a debate scheduled; Tavis Smiley's ratings might not warrant Presidential candidates showing up. It's comical how people keep scheduling these debates left and right, and then getting all upset when the candidates decline or can't make it.

    September 26, 2007 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  3. Tom, Anaheim, CA

    What a crock. The GOP isn't scared of black voters. They'll manipulate them (lie and tell them what they want to hear) just like the do any voting block. And if they can't do than they will discount them, marginalize them, legislate them into ineligibility and if none of that works they will re-program the electronic voting machines to change their votes to Republican candidates. It is ego or self aggrandizement that would make anyone think the GOP is "scared" of anything. Afterall if they lose they still win and then they regroup and come back again in 4 years. It's not like the outcome makes them homeless or broke or lose their medical insurance or killed in Iraq. They are and always will be in the drivers seat dispite the outcome.

    September 26, 2007 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  4. ronnie - knoxville, tn.

    When the Hispanic station didn't get 100 per cent turnout, it was "Oh, the republicans don't like Hispanics"; when Democratic candidates refused to debate on FOX, it was "oh, Democrats don't like FOX"; when Mitt Romney didn't want to debate a snowman, it was "Oh, the Republicans are afraid of college kids on you tube." Sheesh, don't take it so personally.

    September 26, 2007 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  5. Wallace, Chicago IL

    I won't touch this, but Roland Martin has very good points about the GOP and the fact that they are scared of Latino and Black voters.

    I'm sure someone will find a way to spin this though.

    "Who cares about Latinos and Blacks. They're taking jobs from good, hard working Americans..."


    September 26, 2007 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  6. Larry B. Boston, MA

    A better question, Mr. Martin:

    Why are all of the sensible people of America afraid of the GOP?

    September 26, 2007 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  7. bukky, Baltimore, MD

    They are not SCARED... they dont want us. Because the causes/issues that black people actually care about, poverty, racism, civil rights... are in direct opposition of what the GOP stand for.

    September 26, 2007 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  8. Sara Los Angeles, CA

    Do we need to look much further than Jena, LA or Orange, TX or Yonkers, New York or Howard Beach , New York or places like that to wonder why? IMO, the Republican party cannot bring to the table and support the important social justice issues that would bring about greater racial equality. Just look at the immigration smoke screen. SO instead of trying for a compromise the Reps are telling the black community they do not matter. Just wait until the general election – won't that all change.

    September 26, 2007 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  9. Brent, Madison, WI

    These comments are akin to the ones you are condenming from our favorite fox news anchor. Here is the racist formula use: 1 You make a stereotype, 2) you reference single instances, 3) you make wide reaching statments that reference point 1 and 2, and 4) you offer bland, one might say stupid, non-solution solutions to the non-problem problems. Go Martin!

    September 26, 2007 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  10. Neal

    I have no doubt the GOP knows they will forever have a have hard time getting Black American voters to side with them....The interest of the GOP doesn't parallel the interest of Black voters in almost zero ways possible. The Latino population is about 37million in the U.S. and the Black American population around 39million.

    The only reason Bush sought after the Latinos is to save his party, b/c Black America has given up completely to support a party who sole interest are Anglo-Saxon related only.

    Thank God, the immigration bill didn't pass, b/c no Latino or immigrant should be given free rights to freedom in this country due to the sole interest of a political party. Bush new, that if immigrants are given the rights to freedom to this country, then every generation of these immigrants will forever see BUSH and the GOP like Black America views Abraham Lincoln. I am glad the bill didn't pass. No immigrant deserves my country without a huge price to offer. Blacks earned it from slavery, they should do the equal same.

    September 26, 2007 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  11. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    He's exactly right.

    Even as Republican/Independent I can see the Republicans are making a huge mistake not even sitting down with blacks and hearing their views on life, liberty and the pursuit.

    Not like he Democrats have done much to advance the cause (except to offer the world and produce bleep), but to just give up on a voting block that in reality shares some of the same values is stupid, arrogant and will come at the parties peril.

    There are blacks out there that are not happy with the other party (I hear it all the time) and a golden chance to bring these good people into the flock is being wasted.

    You don't have to agree on every issue or offer handouts, just offer a better alternative.

    September 26, 2007 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  12. dan, dallas , tx.

    would you go to a debate that no one was watching?

    September 26, 2007 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  13. Dan (Baltimore, MD)

    The correct question is why is the liberal media scared of the GOP? This biased piece makes an assumption and then presents what is supposed to be evidence of it. It does not look at alternative points of view, though and that's why it's a bad piece of journalism.

    It seems really fishy that these so-called minority debates were scheduled for the end of the fundraising cycle. The selection of those dates forced the contenders to make a choice between a debate and finishing off the quarter in a strong financial position. That's why the frontrunners will not be there, but the little guys who aren't making much money anyway will. Next time, the people who arrange the debates should consult with the frontrunners before they make the schedule. But, if they do that how will they make the GOPers seem racist? If you want one party to win an election, this is a good tactic to employ.

    September 26, 2007 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  14. Ffred, Flagstaff, AZ

    Let's not forget the backsliding of desegregation, thanks in no little part to the Supreme Court. True, affirmative action was meant as a "temporary" measure until we could come up with something better, but of course we haven't. On the other hand, is increased segregation so much racial as technological in origin? Decades ago, Clifford D. Simak in "The Huddling Place" predicted a link between increased technological interconnectedness and increased physical insularity. Is the blogosphere living proof?

    September 26, 2007 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  15. Neal,

    One more comment to blast:

    I didn't approve of Hillary's premature attack on Obama's lack of experience to become President of the USA. Well, thus far, Bush has proved one thing that deserves my respect and gives me great comfort to know this and that is, he has proved that anyone without mastery of the English language, or a fool who possess below average mental capacity can become president of the USA-thus proving qualifications is a bunch of non-sense. He's the only president that has proven this thus far, and all mindless American should feel hopeful!

    September 26, 2007 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  16. Kevin, Greensboro NC

    Dan in Dallas asks:

    "would you go to a debate that no one was watching?"

    Dan, ALL the candidates (from both parties) have been going to debates that "no one" watches.

    The issue is why GOP candidates refuse to appear for THIS particular debate (as opposed to other ones). And I think Roland Martin hits the nail on the head.

    Frankly, by NOT showing, the GOP candidates are hoping to curry favor with racist elements in our society. Mathematically, I think that is a ridiculous strategy. And worse, its morally repugnant.

    September 26, 2007 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  17. anon, San Francisco, CA

    The black voters do not like the GOP for sure. Now they are looking for support from a half-black muslim presidential candidate (Borat Hussein Osama).

    September 26, 2007 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  18. ronnie - knoxville, tn.

    I agree with "Brent" in Madison that blog tends to take ONE isolated case, such as the blog entry a few mos. back where the illegal immigrant has to choose between her son and "living" in the US. They take this ONE incident and say the government is so big and bad and has no compassion for illegal immigrants.

    September 26, 2007 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  19. Ron, TX

    Maybe they don't realize blacks got the right to vote?

    September 26, 2007 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  20. James, Phoenix AZ

    Mr Martin,

    Why do black men in the media (you, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, NAACP leaders, etc) ALWAYS have to make every issue about Black versus White?

    Does the exercise of attempting to point out others' (usually white people) racism somehow justify yours?

    September 26, 2007 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  21. Jo R, Buena Park, CA

    I have this perception that the majority of Republicans are racist but I don't feel that way for all republicans that I still hold respect, I'm independent so I get to vote either DEM or REP.

    September 26, 2007 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  22. aj, dayton, oh.

    I do think that black voters who are not looking for welfare are way more conservative than we think. Blacks tend to embrace family, are more pro-life than most groups and want a strong military. It's the blacks looking to live off government handouts who like Democratic candidates.

    September 26, 2007 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  23. Mel Springfield, Oregon

    The GOP isn't scared of the black vote, the GOP can't get the majority of the black vote. Why? Because it's easier to take handouts from the Democrats and just coast. Need proof? YouTube's Dem. debate: "Where are my reparations?" That will always divide us, unfortnately. And it really makes it harder to get rid of that prejudice for those blacks who don't subscribe to that hand out philosophy. Those are the hard-working people who really subscribe to the American Dream. And that's where the GOP should be focusing their energies.

    September 26, 2007 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  24. Tony, Los Angeles, CA

    If GOP candidates are concerned that there are too many debates but also concerned about the message their sending to blacks and latino's, why don't they show some leadership and effort to state that they will attend a more publicly viewed forum to reach out to these two minority groups? Perhaps Tavis is relatively small beans in the big picture, but with 70+ million potential black and latino voters, you'd think that with some effort, a strategically suitable debate could be organized.

    The bottom line is that the GOP doesn't care and therefore, no effort will be made by this parties top guys to make something like this happen.


    September 26, 2007 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  25. scott in tx.

    Republicans depend far less on black voters than Democrats. Unfortunately, when people try to put forth a view that blacks don't agree with, the situation tends to turn into a shouting match among the crowd. Little is advanced and, in the end, blacks just end up looking out of control and not able to meet and dicuss their views with any civility.

    September 26, 2007 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
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