Are things uncomfortable at home for African Americans in the South who are moderate to conservative? Booker Rising, the premiere conservative Black political blog, has a great quiz in their margin. The quiz would indicate that a surprising number of Black voters down here are actually moderate if not conservative. Then, what’s the problem?
The problem could be fitting these people neatly into the two existing major political parties. On the Left, national Democrats go a little too far with spending and the role of government—well intended but not fiscally sound. On the Right, the methods of the Far Right segment are too much for many in my community to stomach.
In Georgia, I can respect the efforts of Melvin Everson, Cory Ruth and Dr. Deborah Honeycutt as Black candidates in the GOP. If Honeycutt doesn’t win the runoff, a pattern seems to be appearing because she would be the candidate best positioned to attract members of our community from strong Rep. David Scott. Everson would have won the general election because his time at my alma mater Albany State University gave him a ready-made statewide network. I am even concerned that other GOP candidates downplay or don’t want our support because their base view most Blacks as liberal.
Democrat Senate candidate R.J. Hadley stomped all over Georgia—even Tea Party type events. He is a rising star in Georgia politics. Here’s a good question: who has more juice in the southern GOP, the Tea Party Movement or the African American community. On Booker Rising, I read the post from Black Tea Party people with an open-mind. But, this is Georgia and Atlanta is the best Black city on earth. I can’t call it but thanks to the conservatives who look like me for standing by your guns while moderates are purged. If the Blue Dogs spend time with conservatives in swing district, conservative candidate should do the same on some level…in swing districts.
I would strongly recommend that the Red team “show the flag” in every community. While votes might be few in certain circles, elected officials in our form of government represent everyone—not just the people who vote for them. What’s interesting is that many of the GOP candidates worked with and around various types of people in their professional backgrounds. They get to party meetings everyone is cookie cutter of each other and fearful of any others. Do like the Blue Dogs and insist on being the candidate you want to be. Like R.J. Hadley and Ray McKinney, candidates should talk talk talk with anyone who will listen.