Congressional Black Caucus blasts Artur Davis over party switch
August 28th, 2012
09:24 AM ET
10 years ago

Congressional Black Caucus blasts Artur Davis over party switch

(CNN) - Members of the Congressional Black Caucus disparaged former Rep. Artur Davis Tuesday, blasting the former Obama supporter for endorsing Mitt Romney this cycle.

Davis switched party affiliation from Democrat to Republican this year, two years after he failed to capture the Democratic nomination in his bid for the Alabama governorship.

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He's been in the headlines recently as a top surrogate for the Romney campaign, attributing his switch to the GOP to what he calls President Barack Obama's transition to the far left.

Fourteen members of the caucus, however, strongly took issue with Davis' decision and described his party move as a political ploy.

"Given the magnitude of your recent transformation, we can only conclude that, rather than a true conversion, your actions are the result of a nakedly personal and political calculation or simmering anguish after failing to secure the Democratic nomination for governor of the State of Alabama in 2010," the members wrote in a letter addressed to Davis.

The letter comes the same day as Davis, a former member of the caucus himself, is scheduled to speak in a primetime hour of 9 p.m. ET at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida.

His high-profile speech draws a sharp contrast to his convention role four years ago, when he seconded Obama's nomination at the Democratic National Convention in 2008. At the time, he served as a co-chairman on Obama's presidential campaign.

Davis said he had hoped Obama's presidency would make a huge dent in race relations, as well as move the Democratic Party further to the center. Speaking on CNN two weeks ago, Davis also pointed to Vice President Joe Biden's controversial comments–in which he told a Virginia crowd that Romney's regulatory policies would "put y'all back in chains"–as an example of why Davis is disappointed in the current administration.

"It ought to embarrass President Obama," Davis said. "President Obama has talked so movingly about our country moving beyond race, and his own vice president makes this kind of comment yesterday? It was wrong and the president ought to be embarrassed by it, and the president ought to say it was wrong."

The 14 caucus members also referenced the former congressman's previous statements of support for Obama and Democratic views on big issues, including Wall Street reform, the stimulus bill, and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
"We regret that you have chosen this course, but are confident that the American people see your pronouncements for what they are and come to the same disappointing conclusion of your former colleagues," the letter stated.

The letter was signed by the following members of Congress:

Chairman Emmanuel Cleaver (MO-05)
Rep. Corrine Brown (FL-03)
Rep. G. K. Butterfield (NC-01)
Rep Donna Christensen (VI-AL)
Rep. James E. Clyburn (SC-06)
Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (MI-14)
Rep. Donna F. Edwards (MD-04)
Rep. Marcia Fudge (OH-11)
Rep. Barbara J. Lee (CA-09)
Rep. John Lewis (GA-05)
Rep. Gregory Meeks (NY-06)
Rep. Cedric Richmond (LA-02)
Rep. Terri A. Sewell (AL-07)
Rep. Bennie Thompson (MS-02)

soundoff (243 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Mary wrote:

    So, the black caucus doesn't think a black person should be Republican???
    Here's another one. No, only ignorant right wing radio says things like that. Mayor Corey Booker of Newark got equal treatment when he criticized the president when the Bain Capital attacks began. He's still a Democrat, BTW.

    August 28, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  2. ghostriter

    Truth, a bi-partisan vote would be......I dunno......maybe 30% or better supporting it. 13 out of 200 is what? Darn it, I keep forgetting that math isn't conservatives strong point. Let's try it this way. It's like looking at 100 conservatives, finding one that has all his teeth and concluding that most conservatives aren't toothless hicks. Especially when the numbers prove otherwise.

    August 28, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  3. Anonymous


    This regards your posting on August 28, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm
    I wish every Republican who has tried so hard to revise recent economic and political history would take time to read your outstanding posting. Thanks |

    August 28, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  4. ghostriter

    ?, yes, there is an asian caucus and a hispanic caucus. There is also a jewish caucus, I believe. I wonder why conservatives aren't mad about that one......

    August 28, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  5. Keeping it Real

    So the Black Caucus slams any black politician that aren't a member of the Democrat party? How incredibly racist!

    August 28, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  6. Herewe Goagain

    The CBC is too busy blowing themselves.

    August 28, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  7. dubrats

    wow i think the dems. carry the chains...sad when a person is not allowed to pick their own matter what color you about racism.....yikes this country is scary.

    August 28, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |

    Why be mad ,let the goofball go to where the rest of the goofball freaks are ,that's the Gop bafoons party and romney the tax cheat and atkins Ryan loseing Gop ticket !!!!!

    August 28, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  9. Sue

    I sure hope Davis doesn't expect any help from the republicans to aid him in winning an elected office next time he tries! If so, he's going to be sorely disappointed. However, he'll get what he deserves! While I don't fault him for changing his allegiance if he's unhappy with the current administration, however being so blatant about, shows there's much more to the story than President Obama's "far transition to the left", as he puts it! President Obama has the same values now that he held in 2008. And continuing to dis Joe Biden about "the chains remark" has been worn out by the GOP........and besides, nobody cares! So get a grip Mr. Davis and get on with your life – and good luck with your new republican buddies!

    August 28, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  10. Mike F

    Good riddance I say. If he left and decided he really wanted to be in the GOP, I would understand, because no black owes total loyalty to either party. But his comment about why he switched blaming President Obama and then VP Biden for his comment and joining a party that has made such nasty racial comments about our President. Even Romneys latest "No one has to ask me about my birth certificate" is a racist ploy against the President. So Arthur Davis is a traitor to his own kind. I would not be surprised to see him in a white KKK hood waving the confederate flag. All blacks like him should join the GOP. They would be right at home.

    August 28, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  11. One party politics

    Maybe if President Obama would have given him support, he may not have lost the election. I have noticed The president has a way of dismissing democracts and Blacks when they really need him As they say, revenge is a dish best serve cold.

    August 28, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  12. Urbanll

    The Black Caucus wants to keep blacks in chains – no black politician is allowed to leave the plantation. Why are Blacks the most racist people? Are liberals really this clueless that they can't comprehend "freedom of choice"? The liberal mind is truely out of balance. OZero keeps attacking the "producers" in this country and still wonders why unemployment won't go down.

    August 28, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  13. Hahahahahahahaha

    Robme and ryAnn will lose. Get over it. Hahahahahahahaahha

    August 28, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  14. Mina

    It is the way Mr Davis did it. He basically stabbed his friend and party in the back because he thought he could do better as a republican. Not because his ideas had changed but because his ambition had and he didn't see a way to get where he wanted to be as a dem. His actions were self serving and traiterous.

    August 28, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  15. amy

    It is sad to see there is a BLACK Caucus!!!!! If a white congressman came and established a White Caucus, AL SHARPTON and MSNBC will raise hell!!!!!!!!!!! Be Real, Congressman DAVIS is the MAN....

    August 28, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  16. truth hurts

    ghostriter - Considering that you are probably using those already, you will need us. Us educated folk tend to be alright
    Well if that doesn't just say it all right there. I'm a liberal edcuated Democrat and know far better than you do what you want and need. Trust me, the government, to give you want you want because with my superior intellect I can far better determine your needs. No need for all theat pesky free thought and choice. It is just too much work for you unwashed unedcuated peasants. Your life will be far better with my elite liberal control of it. Only an uneducated dolt would disagree and you are one of those are you? All it will require is all of your money and all of your freedom. Do we have a deal?

    August 28, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  17. KC

    All you people calling out democrats for being racists, no where does it say that blacks can't be republican. The issue is this guy is jumping ship because he didn't win the Democratic nomination. I believe Lieberman got the same treatment when he went Independent. The guy's reasons are ridiculous. The Joe Biden comment is small potatoes considering all vile and racists things the Republicans have said towards the president. To say the President should be embarrassed by the comment, really the Repubs have been embarrassing themselves since they started their witch hunt to get the president out of the office. So he is going to a party that has called the president a liar, socialist, marxist, racist, nazi etc and he seems ok with that. Sounds like he is a perfect fit for the Repubs. What's he going to do when he loses as a Republican?

    August 28, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    This fool wants attention. And he is mad as hell that he is not going to be Govenor. He is a uncle Tom.

    August 28, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
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