By Raynard Jackson
In the 2008 presidential election, Blacks were the largest voting bloc for Obama (as a percentage)—96 percent. In 2012, Obama received 93 percent of the Black vote, again the largest percentage of any voting bloc.
What type of return on their votes has the Black community received? Zero. They have received lectures, been talked down to, and, more often, totally ignored.
Obama was sworn into office on January 20, 2009. In less than two months (March 18, 2009), Obama had his first meeting with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to discuss giving amnesty to the 30 million illegals in the U.S. After the meeting, the White House’s Press Office issued a statement that said, in part: “The President had a robust and strategic meeting with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus today on the topic of immigration. The meeting lasted approximately one hour. The President discussed how the administration will work with the CHC to address immigration concerns in both the short and long term.”
Notice that only Hispanics were in this meeting and the purpose was to discuss an issue that is of particular importance to only them (though other groups that support amnesty would also benefit if amnesty were made into law).
Juxtapose that with Obama’s response in separate interviews about his administration’s inaction on issues of great concern to the Black community. “I think it’s a mistake to start thinking in terms of particular ethnic segments of the United States rather than to think that we are all in this together and we are all going to get out of this together,” he said. In a second interview he said, “the most important thing I can do for the African American community is the same thing I can do for the American community, period, and that is get the economy going again and get people hiring again.”
So, if that be true, can someone explain to me why there were no Blacks, Asians, Africans or Indians in the meeting with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus? They are Americans. They have members from their community that have a great interest in immigration policy. They have members of congress from these various ethnic groups.
Let’s compare the White House’s official readout from the meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus from 2010, 2011, and 2013. Notice that there is always at least a year in between meetings with the Black Caucus, but he meets with Hispanics and homosexuals on a regular basis.
From March, 2010, “This afternoon, President Obama met with members of the Congressional Black Caucus to discuss the economy, job creation and the need to pass health care reform. President Obama acknowledged the progress that has been made on the economy while also expressing his concern for long-term unemployment. He requested that Members provide specific recommendations to the challenges concerning job creation.”
From May, 2011, “The President met with members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) today in the State Dining Room of the White House to discuss job creation and economic growth. The economy has added 2.1 million private sector jobs over 14 consecutive months, including more than 800,000 jobs since the beginning of the year, but the President recognizes that too many Americans families are still hurting and the unemployment rate is unacceptably high—especially among African Americans.”
From July, 2013, “This morning, President Obama met with Members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) at the White House. During the meeting, they discussed a range of topics including the economy, voting rights legislation, education, comprehensive immigration reform, youth employment, gun violence, and anti-poverty programs… Though the economy is showing signs of improvement, the President and the CBC expressed shared frustration over the pace of economic growth and the elevated unemployment rate among African Americans. The president reaffirmed his commitment to support and create policies that will not only build a strong economy for the middle class but also create ladders of opportunity for those striving to get into the middle class.”
Every time Obama meets with homosexuals or Hispanics, it’s always to discuss specific legislation of interest to them, not to have some broad, free-wheeling conversation. You can even see the lack of importance of the Black Caucus by just noticing how the respective meetings are characterized by the White House.
Obama met with the CBC last week for the first time in almost two years. This is what Congressman Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio), chairman of the group, said after the meeting, “I’ve been the chair about six months, and the request we made to the president [for a meeting] has been answered. I am pleased… I think that the lines of communication have not only been open but will actually, we will have broader and deeper discussions as a result of our meeting today.”
I have absolutely no idea what this means. She is talking, but not saying anything.
Obama has had his perfunctory meeting with the CBC; now he can get back to ignoring them and passing out goodies to every other special interest (Hispanics, homosexuals, labor, White males,
As Politico, characterized Obama’s reaction to the recent Supreme Court decision on the Voting Rights Act. The title was, “President Obama’s muted response to a civil rights challenge.” The article goes on to say, “Even a Supreme Court decision knocking out a central element of a landmark civil rights law couldn’t push President Barack Obama to abandon his muted approach to racial issues.
The court’s 5-4 recent ruling torpedoing a core provision of the Voting Rights Act led the first black president to issue a tepid, two-paragraph written statement referencing “discrimination” and declaring that he was “deeply disappointed,” but never invoking the vivid and searing dogs-and-firehoses imagery that spurred the passage of the law in 1965. He made no mention of African Americans or Latinos, the groups viewed as the act’s main beneficiaries, but simply called for making voting “fair” and ensuring it was open to all.
Raynard Jackson is president & CEO of Raynard Jackson & Associates, LLC., a Washington, D.C.-based public relations/government affairs firm. He can be reached through his Web site, www.raynardjackson.com. You can also follow him on Twitter at raynard1223.