Thursday, November 16, 2006

African Americans Take Key Positions in the House of Reps

The Washington Post reported today on the key positions several African Amerian lawmakers will take now that the Democrats have wrested control of the U.S. House of Representatives. They write:

Three days after workers broke ground for the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on the Mall, the Congressional Black Caucus is preparing to break new ground of its own.

Five of its members are poised to take the helm of key House committees when Democrats assume control of Congress next year: John Conyers Jr. (Mich.) of Judiciary, Alcee L. Hastings (Fla.) of intelligence, Juanita Millender-McDonald (Calif.) of House Administration, Reps. Charles B. Rangel (N.Y.) of Ways and Means, and Bennie Thompson (Miss.) of Homeland Security.

Another member, Rep. James E. Clyburn (S.C.), is slated to be named majority whip, which would make him the third-ranking Democrat in the House.

Read more.

The Strength of the Black Vote in the Midterms

Ron Walters, a political scientist at the University of Maryland, wrote a column in the Chicago Defender recently explaining the importance of the black vote in the recent midterm elections. He wrote:

National exit polls showed that Whites voted 51 percent for Democrats, to 47 percent for Republicans. By contrast, Blacks voted 89 percent for Democrats but only 10 percent in favor of Republicans. This is testimony to the sophistication of Black voters who not only are aware of their interests and vote accordingly, but who also withstood all of the voter suppression schemes to cast their ballots.

Read more.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Michael Steele Wants to Chair RNC

Michael Steele, the African American Maryland Lt. Governor who recently lost in a highly publicized bid for a U.S. Senate seat, wants to chair the Republican National Committee. The Washington Post writes:

Steele, who lost to Democratic Rep. Benjamin Cardin by a margin of 55 percent to 44 percent of the vote, said he believed it was time for the GOP to rethink its views in wake of losing both chambers of Congress in last week's midterm elections, which he described as a "tsunami." Steele said the electorate "was very clear."

Read more.

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Black Voters

Earl Ofari Hutchinson write an article recently that discussed Arnold Shwarzenegger's relationship to black voters and what the Republican Party can learn from it. He wrote:

The kinder, gentler, retooled minority-friendly Arnold did what no Republican in living memory had managed to do. He got the raves of many blacks, and even more of their votes. On election eve, nearly 30 percent of blacks gave the governor a favorable rating.

Read more.

Boston Globe: Deval Patrick As a Catalyst for Black Candidates

The Boston Globe ran an article today about the ways in which Deval Patrick's campaigning is opening the doors of possibility for more black candidates. They write:

Massachusetts black leaders hope Gov.-elect Deval Patrick will be a catalyst for African-Americans to become more politically active, just as John F. Kennedy inspired thousands of young people to follow him into public service when he became the nation's youngest president in 1960.

Patrick's history-making election as Massachusetts' first black governor already has many black people feeling a pride they have not felt before.

Read more.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Black Candidates Move Toward Center in Midterms

MSNBC has an article on black candidates in the recent midterms elections. They discuss the fact that many of the candidates did not talk about race, but that black voters were savvy enough to look at their stance on the issues. They write:

Black candidates in the U.S. midterm elections moved toward the political center, seeking votes across the spectrum and playing down race, academics and analysts have said.

The strategy reflects a further shift from African-American leaders rooted in the civil rights era to a generation of politicians for whom race can be used best as a vehicle for appealing to universal themes such as overcoming poverty.

Read more.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Black Muslim Elected to Congress from Minnesota

Keith Ellison, an African American, was elected to congress on November 7 from the state of Minnesota. Ellison is also the first Muslim to be elected to congress. The Black Commentator discusses Ellison's campaign and prospects. Read more.

Harold Ford Says Race Wasn't A Factor

Harold Ford Jr. from Tennessee has stated recently that he doesn't believe race was a factor in the race for the U.S. Senate seat in Tennessee. The International Herald Tribune reports:

"I was born how I was and I just ran the best race I could," said Ford, who would have become the South's first black senator in more than a century if he had defeated Republican Bob Corker.

"I have no regrets at all," the Memphis Democrat said on a tour to thank his political supporters. "I am more thankful than anything that so many people across this great state gave me a chance to share my views, and I am even more thankful that they allowed me to listen to them."

Read more.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Harold Ford Jr. Concession Speech

Unfortunately, Harold Ford, Jr. did not win his bid for the U.S. Senate in Tennessee on Tuesday. You can watch his concession speech above.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Blacks and The Republican Party: Just Not Happening

As much as the Republicans tried to lure black voters in the 2006 midterm elections, it just didn't happen. Black candidates were run in major races and most of them lost by wide margins. MSNBC reports on the Republican efforts:

Memo to Republican chief Ken Mehlman regarding recruiting black candidates: Try again.

Republicans had hoped to brand 2006 as the year of the black Republican. But with high-profile failures in Maryland’s Senate race and in governor contests in Ohio and Pennsylvania, prospects for GOP gains among black voters turned up short this year and gave scant hope for 2008.

Read more.

Michigan Bans Affirmative Action

Michigan voters passed a ban on affirmative action in yesterday's elections by a significant margin. The Detroit Free Press reports:

Michigan voters sent a clear message about affirmative action programs that offer preferences to women and minorities: It’s time for them to end.

An Election Day poll and hard voter numbers showed the controversial proposal winning by a wide margin.

Read more.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Deval Patrick Elected Governor of Massachusetts!

Deval Patrick won the election to become governor of Massachusetts. He beat his challengers by a very wide margin. Bloomberg reports:

Patrick will become only the second black elected governor in U.S. history after Virginia Democrat Doug Wilder, who served from 1990 to 1994. His victory gives Democrats control of all elected branches of the state's government.

Read more.

Black America Web: The Stakes for Blacks in This Election

Black America Web presented an extensive report today on the stakes for African Americans in this election. They write:

Election Day 2006 and black voters could become an integral part of political history.

In what is being described as the most important mid-term elections in decades, Democrats need 15 seats to regain control of the House of Representatives, six seats to retake the Senate, and a number of black candidates are poised to make history in tight races across the nation.

Read more.

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