Since Lyndon Johnson’s 1964 election Democrats have enjoyed an overwhelming majority of the black vote.  Barrack Obama received 95% in last year’s presidential election, while John Corzine received 90% in his loosing effort against Republican Chris Christie.  Why?

In the 1850’s the Republican Party was  formed to end slavery in American.  Lead by Abraham Lincoln, they brought the nation, through he pain of the Civil War, out of the grips of that shameful institution.  For the most of the next hundred years black Americans tended to favor the Republicans.  A significant turning point was the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who in his second term began to garner strong black support because of his New Deal programs.  He received 71% percent of the black vote, but many blacks still identified more with the  Republican party on the whole.

Another turning point was the presidency of Harry Truman, who desegregated the army.  In his convention speech, he deprecated the Republicans for not living up to their pro-black history, charging “the party that is supposed to be the champion of civil rights still hasn’t responded to my requests for a new civil rights bill.”  He was rewarded with 77% of the black vote.  He earned that.

That statement resonated with many young activists that were  disaffected with the slowness at which the federal government was moving to end segregation.  The impact of Truman’s challenge  did not have an immediate impact, but over time impelled many to consider Democrats such as John F  Kennedy as a possible alternative.  

John Kennedy bolstered his standing with black voters when he issued a phone call that prompted the release of Martin Luther King from being jailed after a protest. (Though his PR team was adamant about concealing this from his Southern Dixiecrat base).  Even after this he barely edged out Republican candidate Richard Milhouse Nixon, Nixon receiving 32% of the black vote.

After Kennedy’s assisination, Lyndon Bains Johnson signed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, earning him a major increase in black support.   This support was amplified by Barry Goldwater’s opposition to the bill.   Liberals use this to brand Goldwater as an enemy to minorities, even though his personal opposition to segregation is well documented.   Johnson garnered an unprecented 94% of the black vote.

In 1968 Nixon capitalized on the Goldwater conservative momentum, mobilizing the “Silent Majority”.  This coalition represented the Americans who were turned off by the radical politics that permeated the anti-Vietman War protests and militant anti-establishment groups.  Many of the emerging  black power organizations considered this Nixon’s affront against them.  They  used their influence on the mainstream black identity to compel the race to reject him.

Nixon has been decried for the use of  “the southern strategy”,  an appeal to the anti-civil rights sentiment of southern white voters.  But that is actually misconception, as candidate George Wallace surely cornered that market with his 13 percent of the total vote.

Under Nixon, George Shultz  implemented the Philadelphia Plan, the foundation of what is now informally known as affirmative action.  The plan is the first comprehensive policy for racial hiring quotas.  Many observed this as politically motivated, the intention being to drive a wedge between black voters and white union labor, two of the pillars for the Democratic base.   Ultimately the Democratic left would adopt racial quotas as its own means to secure the loyalty of minority voters.

Ronald Reagan defeat of Jimmy Carter in 1980 was the dawning of a new age for conservatives and America.  Despite cutting the top marginal rate for everyone by 20%, he was decried by the left for being unjust to the poor and for seeking to disenfranchise black people.  Yet not one of Reagan’s policy initiatives have any provable disparate impact on black people specifically due to race.  But his detractor’s had found a Golden Ticket; Reagan was an example of Republican institutional racism. 

The institutional racism charge is very effective because it is almost impossible to disprove to the true believers.  Proponents of this doctrine simply hold that all of the mechanisms used by Reagan and the conservatives were hidden and structural.  Then demagogues such as Reverend Jeremiah Wright make outrageous, unproven claims that the Reagan used AIDS and crack to kill black people.  When black people question this lunacy they are accused of being naive or racial disloyal. 

Post Reagan era Republican racial stigmatization was less dramatic but equally effective.  George H. W. Bush was accused of exploiting the case of Willie Horton, a black convicted murderer who committed violent crimes while on a weekend pass.  However, it was Al Gore who originally brought the issue to bear in his primary contest with Michael Dukas. 

In 1994 The Republicans, lead by Newt Gingrich, took both houses of Congress from the Democrats.  Gingrich’s legacy was the Contract with America,  a ten point program detailing the conservative legislative agenda. 

Two particular points, the Crime Bill and Welfare Reform, struck  a sour note with many black spokesmen.  Even though Welfare Reform resulted in drastic reductions in those on the welfare roles including millions of black Americans, many on the left regarded this as an attack on minorities.   And the Crime Bill helped contribute to a significant reduction of crime in the 1990’s through the following decade. 

In fact the Contract account of the crime bill identified crime’s disproportionate impact on young black victims.  This is a point lost one those who rant about how over-policing and racial profiling resulting in the incarceration of over 1 million black men.

This positive change was best demonstrated in New York City, where under Mayor Rudy Giuliani, the city enjoyed a 75% reduction in violent crime.  Though thousands of the people who were safer are black residents,  many liberals, such as Susan Sarandon and Phil Donahue, complain that the Republicans encourage racial profiling.   They seem flippantly unconcerned with the benefits that these measures have provided the minorities.

Finally, George W Bush has been the object of unending disaffection from the left.   The primary case against him has been his handling of  Hurricane Katrina Emergency.   FEMA and the federal government was unprepared for the disaster, many insisted that the poor response was due to the fact that the victims were black. 

Charlie Rangel compared George Bush to “Bull Connor”, the Alabama Commissioner of Safety who in the 1960’s  attempted to keep blacks students out of white schools.  Kenye West said the George Bush “doesn’t like black people”, as he is obviously an authority on the logistics of federal storm response. 

While Barney Frank and Howard Dean irresponsibly cited race as a factor in the response, they failed to reconcile that with the fact the Mayor Ray Nagen, who is black, was at least equally ineffective.  Nagen failed to make  buses designated for evacuation sufficiently available, and his unconstitutional order to confiscate the guns of law-abiding citizens made them vulnerable to a brutal crime wave.  This decision was one of the most egregious and indefensible abuses of power in recent history.

 Also the Democratic Governor Blanco mishandled billions of dollars provided for this occurrence.  Why discuss any of that when you can just blame Bush.

During the national presidential election last year several liberal pundits said the Democratic earned the black vote. 

The Greyfalcon challenges the Democratic Party to name five major policy initiatives that have earned them +90% of the black vote.  I think that would have them tongue-tied twisted and “all we-wed up”.

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