November 2nd, 2010
10:42 PM ET
3 years ago

No African-Americans in next U.S. Senate

New York (CNN) – Despite record election achievements by African-Americans in the House, the United States Senate will not have an African-American in its ranks.

All three black Senate candidates, Kendrick Meek (D-FL), Alvin Greene (D-SC) and Mike Thurmond (D-GA) are projected to lose tonight. The only incumbent black senator, Roland Burris (D-IL), is retiring.

Only six black senators have served: three Republicans and three Democrats, including the future President Barack Obama (D-IL).

There have been 118 voting members of Congress who are African-American. This year the GOP has 14 African-Americans on the ballot, any one of which could become the first black Republican in the house since 2003.

There are 41 African-American Democrats in Congress of which most are running in majority black districts. CNN projects Alabama sent its first African-American woman to Congress tonight with the election of Terri Sewell in the state's 7th district. She is a Democrat.


Filed under: 2010 • Senate
soundoff (297 Responses)
  1. BDSNSC

    SO WHAT!?!?! Why in God's name does this matter and why is this article even written?

    November 2, 2010 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  2. d

    well, if there weren't any qualified black candidates, or none that could capture people's imagination, then none are going to be elected. it's a free country....you're free to run for office and we are free to not vote for you!

    November 2, 2010 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  3. Donn

    Why would a columnist write this article? What is the purpose other than to promote anxiety, distrust and anger. IT DOESN'T FRINKIN' MATTER the color. Come on guys....we've moved a hellofalong way from those days except for those who still want to pomote it.
    What is being said is it is time for this country to take back it basic roots. There is no color in it. Our forefathers are still spinning and how we mucked up such a wonderful dream.....we got greedy.
    Let's drop the racial crap and start holding hands. We have a country to build (or rebuild) and it will take EVERYONE. Failing that, look for the local mosque next to your Starbucks.

    November 2, 2010 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  4. Blessed

    Regardless of dems or republicans its amazing that one would say dems only help welfare recipients when I made more as an African American under Bill Clinton without a Degree than I made under Bush with a bachelors and a Masters that i paid for. Its about educating ourselves on the issues. people have to have sonmeone to blame and while some say Dems like welfare and public programs as a taxpayer since the age of 14 I was raised to think that all republicans help the rich and middle class but now that group is in foreclosure and its not a democrates fault. We allowed people to run this country and rob it of decent jobs taken abroad and expect the cost of living to be maintained when people have been working at a brick and mortar job for 10-20 or on social security they paid into for 50 years and not get a raise. If we thought this country was in trouble then just wait. Working class people are going to feel it even worse in the next 4 years.

    November 2, 2010 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  5. Rock

    Hey – all the "supporters" of this article. Soledad is talking about Senators – those are the people that represent entire states – and that's two per state. Not the House of Representatives – the larger body of Congress (by five times) that has many black representatives – in face two Republican African Americans were elected to office today! (And yes Corey there has been black republicans in the House before.

    What the comments here show is a vast ignorance of what the article (which is clearly just done for race baiting terms) says – three black senatorial candidates lost – and they were all projected to lose – but people get on the web and just say oh that's so sad. You simply don't know the facts about those specific races. By the way Deval Patrick won as Governor in Massachusetts again – and he's black.

    November 2, 2010 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  6. mike

    i had so many robo calls to my house i refused to vote. i am a republican and after the 100th call to my house i voted not to vote they dont deserve my vote talk to me dont do a robot call

    November 2, 2010 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  7. Jimmy Cracker

    I guess the first order of business will be to disband the Senate Basketball team

    November 3, 2010 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  8. Layne

    There is another common denominator here...

    It has NOTHING to do with the fact that they are African American, it the fact that they are Democrats. Simple!

    November 3, 2010 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  9. Juan Carlos de Burbon

    Obama abandoned his race and America. The people of America–from all races–have responded this way. It's on his shoulders now.

    November 3, 2010 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  10. Chad Ballard

    The comment about never being a black Republican in the House of Reps is not true. J.C. Watts Jr. from OK served in the House from 1997 until 2003.

    November 3, 2010 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  11. Bob the Observer

    The real question will be whether the African-American Republicans are allowed to join the Congressional Black Caucus. When J.C. Watts was elected, the Caucus refused to accept him, even though he is African-American. It seems that you also have to be a liberal Democrat to be considered "black" by congress.

    I hope the African-American Republicans who win tonight will storm the gates of this caucus and get rid of the prejudice that says you are not black if you are not a liberal democrat.

    November 3, 2010 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  12. Phil

    Corey said, "Did you know that there has never been a republican african american in the house of reps? Never. I think that would be an interesting occurance."

    Yet the article says, "This year the GOP has 14 African-Americans on the ballot, any one of which could become the first black Republican in the house since 2003."

    I'm confused. Wikipedia, here I come.

    November 3, 2010 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  13. rp

    Corey, there have been at least 18 African American Republicans in the House, including Joseph Rainey (R-SC), the first African American to serve in the House EVER. Other notable Republicans include the first Afican American to serve in the Senate and the first African American to serve as a governor.

    November 3, 2010 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  14. MIke

    How stupid the US electorate is. Bush hands over a destroyed economy to Obama and it is HIS fault?! Take a leaf from your social democratic friends in Australia, with a balanced budget, no government debt, universal health care, stable property prices and 5% unemployment. WHat's wrong with you people?

    November 3, 2010 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  15. Matt

    For all those idiots who complaint about Obama – answer a simple question: were things better 2 years ago or are they worse now then 2 years ago? Well, it's obvious (despite what some idiots say that the country is going to hell) that at least the economy is not falling down, and the most important – there is not fear, as there was 2 years ago. No fear and no panic, but unfortunately people have a short-term memory, and we are going to blame Obama for all the mess that was created before him.

    November 3, 2010 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  16. Brody Brotman

    yes! yes!!!

    I predict the country will be back on track this upcoming January. One objective to prosperity reached. The next in 2012.
    It's not racism, this is factual experience. It is only racism when you do not get your way.

    November 3, 2010 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  17. Fear of a Black Congress

    The lies, fear and hate will fade when truth, faith (in our fellow human) and love are values we cherish and teach our children. Change yourself, the a**es will follow. Fascism breeds like larvae in shallow, fetid minds.

    November 3, 2010 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  18. monzell lewis

    Well this is the usa. learn the truth of self thats where the problem lie. know thyself is key.

    November 3, 2010 12:08 am at 12:08 am |
  19. Fear of a Black Congress

    The lies, fear and hate will fade when truth, faith (in our fellow human) and love are values we cherish and teach our children. Change begins with oneself, leading by example is the grandest form of humility. Fascism breeds like larvae in shallow, fetid minds.

    November 3, 2010 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  20. msconcepcion

    I'm sure a good majority of the people saying this is unimportant news and that the race of our senators does not matter would be UP IN ARMS if the senate was composed entirely of minorities. I'd bet good money that race would become a legitimitate issue then!

    November 3, 2010 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  21. ellissa

    Im so tired of all the talk about our president isn't doing his job, as far as I have seen he has been real busy trying 2 better the country for all of us. If you really want 2 hear a fact listen to this 1- President Obama has had is hands tied since day 1 trying to put the country back 2gether after we let the George Bush screw it up 4 8years straight! It aint over yet its only mid-terms Democrats haven't given up!!!!!!

    November 3, 2010 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  22. joie

    It really doesn't matter who wins, they're politicians and all they care about is who can piss the farthest. If they truly cared about the people we'd be in a much better state then we are. And as Bette Davis once said "Fasten your seat belts. It's going to be a bumpy night." Just try to hang on to what you've got and good luck to all!!!!!!!

    November 3, 2010 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  23. erik

    Who cares? I thought color doesn't mean anything.

    November 3, 2010 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  24. JB

    I'm less worried that there are no black Senators than whether there are any Senators or Reps that aren't filthy rich, and have never been anything but filthy rich. I'm tired of rich people getting all the representation. I really don't feel that any politician, left or right, truly cares about the middle and lower classes.

    November 3, 2010 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  25. olga

    come on people... if you sit here being racist and the person next to you is being racist... and the person next to him is being racist(and so on and so on), then it turns out thaat this country is just full of hypocrites that don't do anything to HELP this country but just sit there complaining when they could actually change what is going on..
    BTW i'm russian and we're trying to get someone russian into congress... we're actually trying to make something happen and not sit around complaining about it:)

    November 3, 2010 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12