November 2nd, 2010
10:42 PM ET
12 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. Coach Lew

    I wonder why that is? Could it be that America realizes they goofed when they voted Obama as President? Could it be that Rankin and the other one in California has set the stage for corrupted Black Congress People. This is sad but real. There are a lot of qualified Blacks that run businesses and care for the State that the U.S. is in but for some reason they would rather not provide assistance.

    November 3, 2010 03:53 am at 3:53 am |
  2. lisa dansby

    What people fail to realize is color does exisit we are trying to make seem like color is not an issue in the 20th Century it should not matter of course, but it is something that will always show its ugly head, rather if we want to admit it or not

    November 3, 2010 03:55 am at 3:55 am |
  3. ikantraed

    This journalist should be up there with Rick Sanchez for pulling the race card at a time like this.. Way to go guy!

    November 3, 2010 04:05 am at 4:05 am |
  4. TaxPayer75

    Who cares? Minorities love to preach "color-blindness", to look past the color of skin /race /gender and see each other only as Americans.......Unless it serves them better to start head counting who's where and how many! So what if there not any blacks in senate.....that just means none are right for the job at this time and you need to deal with that. Or do you want a quota now, independant of job skill? Just fill the position with blacks because its fair? How about the whites or average man who works hard? Are those individuals not worthy cause they not black? Does that set you back in the fifties to not have someone in the senate? Wow, lets send more drug using, gangster, black youth to college and leave middle class white kids working at wal-mart just because we need blacks in every position regardless of merit. Reverse discrimination...ride the gravy train we built......

    November 3, 2010 04:09 am at 4:09 am |
  5. Nate (Seattle, WA)

    Yeah, I don't see any atheists in the Senate, either. But, you won't see that making headlines on CNN, or any other network.

    November 3, 2010 04:12 am at 4:12 am |
  6. Etah

    Its ALWAYS about black vs. white nowadays Patti, especially with this stupid website. CNN constantly defines things by race and personally, Im sick of it. This is my last post as I wont be returning here for my news.

    November 3, 2010 04:15 am at 4:15 am |
  7. Mrs Pink

    I just finished readinh the comments and I feel absolutely sick to my stomach! What has happened to the "the good old US of A? I sure hope my two sons will live in a world less the anger, less the rage, less the racism. I commend 45.Pam, 50.1:08:51 AM and 51.W.O.W amen. Thank God there are still people in the world who are Color blind and who love the LORD. A very important man told me "Love is the answer to all of lifes problems". We as a people should try it sometime and stop the blame game that being played. Its getting boring. Let's take a deep breath, calm down and work together as one people. Life would be sooo much sweeter. Peace and love. Amen

    November 3, 2010 04:15 am at 4:15 am |

    Hmmm...racism at its best. When will American come out of this?. I thought being giant of the whole worl should lead by example. I come from that part of the world where my country is bedeviled by ethnic militia, religious crisis, What should we learn from you?. To me whether black, white, pink, it is immaterial. The same blood is flowing in us all-red in colour. The same one GOD made us all. Americans should go back to God for things to fall in place. Its not Obama alone. The whole populace should return to GOd. GOd bless America!

    November 3, 2010 04:19 am at 4:19 am |
  9. frank

    I think when when a body elected by the people features a statistically significant difference (0% blacks compared to 8% of the general public) that it is notable. Anyone who doesn't think that race plays a role in this country just refer to this message board as I saw over 10 racist posts. Is being racist a form of ignorance, yes, however I think it is nearly as ignorant to not acknowledge the issues we have with race.

    November 3, 2010 04:21 am at 4:21 am |
  10. soldier truth

    To Connie: It may seem stupid to you that Americans of African descent are called African-Americans, but to people who weren't even considered human in this country it's important to remember we have a rich country heritage. America wouldn't even be recognized as the great country it is without the valuable contributions made by people of color. We don't want our children to forget that fact, even when they are hearing all the disrespectful, racist insults constantly being hurled at our Commander and Chief. These discussions about race aren't comfortable but they are necessary. Let's be respectful of opposing views...RESPECTFUL!

    November 3, 2010 04:29 am at 4:29 am |
  11. jaarin96

    Is anyone really surprised that there will be no minority senators in the Senate now? Our first minority president was attacked as "not qualified" and "not a citizen" from day one so what did you think would happen? Government "by the people and for the people" but some exclusion and limitations may apply, please see manager for details. Warning not all voters may actually qualify to receive representative government because management reserves the right to refuse service.

    November 3, 2010 04:38 am at 4:38 am |
  12. Jason Smith

    "Only six black senators have served: three Republicans and three Democrats, including the future President Barack Obama (D-IL)." Isn't Barack Obama our current President not the "future"President?

    November 3, 2010 04:38 am at 4:38 am |
  13. keystnst

    To all those posting here who are saying why bring up the race issue, it's not about race, just read thru some of these posts and you will see racial hatered at it's worst. It's the same garbage on foxnews website, the innuendos, and outright slurs is sickening. Let's see how well the GOP does now that it can move it's agenda forward.

    November 3, 2010 04:39 am at 4:39 am |
  14. Chris


    Republican Marvin B. Scott, an African-American, ran against incumbent Democrat Andre Carson, another African-American, for the House seat that effectively stands for Indianapolis.

    November 3, 2010 04:40 am at 4:40 am |
  15. warsteiner

    Why is this even a article? What! are we supposed to start giving seats away like jobs. Affirmative action takes less qualified people and gives them preference over others because of skin color which is hypocritical because were not supposed to judge on race,sex,religion,or creed. Oh!We need to have 11.5%of the seats for blacks B.S.! What we need is to stop make race issues the excuse and the free ticket to anywhere.

    November 3, 2010 04:59 am at 4:59 am |
  16. andy Caldwell

    Are ya'll kidding me what is the real problem with blacks and whites? We are totally opposites of each other. One group works and gives the other sits around and waits on a entitlement check haha. They really think they are entitled to money they didn't work for. Second One group believes in taking care of their kids and their neighborhoods and schools. its called respect one has it and the other doesn't even respect themselves. So how can we expect anything but this I'm a victim because of my skin color. And if it doesn't go my way I'll just say it was racist they just trying to keep me down. I could keep going on and on an on it never ends with them. And I for one want put up with it anymore you want to call me a racist fine go ahead but take a minute or two and be honest with yourself and ask yourself. If somebody keep wanting to help themselves to your check so that they can keep paying for programs that you never used. And some will be broke before you can use them wouldn't you get tierd of it and start demanding

    November 3, 2010 05:03 am at 5:03 am |
  17. warsteiner

    In response to Wayne No self respecting white American is afraid of blacks.Furthermore if your talking about the first discovery of humans and claiming that black have had a civilized society longer then whites. I would like to point out that the African blacks are still live in the same cow dung houses that their ancestors lived in. They still live in the bush and they still have not evolved past it.

    November 3, 2010 05:05 am at 5:05 am |
  18. stephen

    When will people stop trying to pin white against black,or republican against democrat?its the progressives- who have poisoned both polical parties and spent this country into 3rd world poverty-who r to blame.republicans drain our economy on war while democrats drain our economy on entitlements to the union leaders and the poor.and for those who consider themselves poor, you are on the top 7% of all the global wealth if you make $30,000 take that into consideration when you want to "spread the wealth".

    November 3, 2010 05:08 am at 5:08 am |
  19. William Clark

    I want to congratulate CNN for playing the Race card. I'm confident we can learn more about the Republicans racist plot to preserve a racist white Senate on CNN's next edition of "Black in America".

    November 3, 2010 05:23 am at 5:23 am |
  20. Dante

    Ok people are so quick to blame obama for this and that,when he does not have complete control over dicissions being made and alot of polocies were put into affect by bush right before obama was even in office that effect things today.Obama came at a time were the economy was already in trouble and people expect him to press a magic button and change everything over night? it doesnt work that way in the real world.He has done more in 2 years than most presidents do in their full term in office,i mean what president in the past 20 years has had to deal with so much and so many issues? Alot of non blacks are quick to say get him out of office things are messed up because of him when he is not to blame for how the current economy is,greedy republicans in the previous term are to blame, so people need to cut our president some slack because hes done alot of good,but there is still alot of work to be done

    November 3, 2010 05:26 am at 5:26 am |
  21. Susana

    I'm a current law student and I'm very angry with how white republicans have tried to dirty Obamas name to gain the Latino vote! truthfully many people are believing them because Obama promised a lot and hasn't been able to accomplish it YET. They don't see everything else he has gained in such little time like bringing our troops back, the same ones BUSH a REPUBLICAN sent to war, wasted TRILLIONS of OUR money on, then walked out of office while leaving all his mess. This has truthfully encouraged me to be involved in the next political campaigns. I among MANY of LATINOS from various universities across country will gather to educate the Latino communities on how white republicans are trying to trick us into gaining our vote and educate them overall. LATINOS AGAINST THE REP VOTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 3, 2010 05:34 am at 5:34 am |
  22. just sad

    America needs to exhale. This is sickening and the title is troublemaking. Its so much hate in the air for no reason.No blacks in senate is solely because of those who did and didnt run and because of those who did and DID NOT VOTE! PERIOD! There will forever be racism and the with internet and freedom of speech it seems to be like a torch of hate and blame that is relit over and over especially thanks to these blogs. Why cant we all just get along.........Honestly i think the mexicans are going to take over because they all stick together and look out for each other and they dont mind seeing others prosper. EVERYONE else is about themselves and not wanting the next person to have more than them. Americans have been so busy beating each other down its been like taking candy from babies. Seriously only in America do jobs list bilingual as prefered/required then offer free ESL classes out the rear but no free Spanish to stay competative in our own job market. Americans in whole are our downfall.

    November 3, 2010 05:42 am at 5:42 am |
  23. no name

    this country is the only country in the entire universe ,that treats the color black like "sin"... I pray that God delivers dis land..Amen

    November 3, 2010 05:46 am at 5:46 am |
  24. Tiredof RaceIssues

    To be honest, race has NO impact. They did not lose because of their race, they lost because of their party and the fact that they are democrats. To be honest America at this point should be beyond race, but that's impossible with the Al Sharptons in the world or the Jesse James who are more racist and more destructive than any perceived indifference by a 'wicked evil white person' ever could be. Stop looking at the color of your skin both as an excuse and a hindrance and it will not be one. Stand up for yourself and stop looking to others to give you a break or give you advancement because of your skin or gender. Really the people most screwed over in this country are not the African Americans, they're the Native Americans (Indians) the one's we forced to leave their land and placed on a they...they were screwed.

    November 3, 2010 05:52 am at 5:52 am |
  25. JL

    So those of you who feel that this is overt racism do you think there should be a race quota for senators? BS, it is what it is, the majority of people are going to vote on the issues, if anything black-Americans (yes I said black because 99% were born in America not Africa) are more inclined to vote for a candidate based on race. It doesn't matter what race the senate is it matter what their agenda is gong to be. I am so sick and tired of political correctness, I wish people would just say what they mean, if it hurts someone else's feeling so what they will get over it just as anyone else would everyone today is just too GD sensitive for their own good and that is why this country has become so wussified that we can't accomplish a dam(n) thing. This article is not newsworthy it is only there to incite a reaction which is what the media has become. 80% of the news we get is not informing as it should be it is there to incite a reaction and increase readership (or internet hits). We as a country need to hold our media outlets accountable for the garbage that they put out. It is harder to find out were a candidate stands on the issues than it is to find out he/she does in their personal time, because the former is boring and the latter is easier to sensationalize.

    November 3, 2010 05:54 am at 5:54 am |
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