By Raynard Jackson (NNPA Newswire Columnist)
Sometimes I wonder if I was a Black Democrat, a retired Black athlete or a Black comedian would it be easier for me to get a meeting with the leadership of the Republican Party or harder.
As a life-long, die hard Black Republican, it seems almost impossible to get noticed in the Republican Party.
Black Republicans with party experience and credentials need not seek any substantive engagement with the very party they have been taking arrows in the back for over the years.
Needless to say, my mouth hit the floor when I began to get calls last week from the media about newly confirmed, Attorney general Jeff Sessions, agreeing to meet with radical “civil entitlements” leaders like Marc Morial, Al Sharpton, Melanie Campbell and Wade Henderson.
I worked for Sessions during his first Senate campaign in 1996 and I know that he is a good and decent person, but I don’t understand how he can justify the fact that one of his first meetings as Attorney General is with people who have called him a racist.
This doesn’t sound like the Jeff Sessions that I know. It sounds like this meeting was forced on him by that smart Black staffer in the White House. On this point, I will continue to give you the benefit of the doubt until I have evidence to the contrary.
The biggest disappointment about this constant dissing of Black Republicans by the party leadership is the loud silence of Black Republicans.
Memo to Black Republicans, “Grow a pair!”
This is why Republicans ignore you and why Blacks despise you. I have been threatened many times in my life by various folks in the party for my outspokenness about the lack of “real” Blacks in this party. As I have told them in private meetings and as I have written constantly in my columns, “My integrity is not for sale!”
I know what it takes to get more Blacks involved in this party, but I refuse to engage in any half-hearted approaches to making this happen. I also refuse to work with any Blacks that are too timid and too weak to confront party leaders head on when they patronize or insult our community.
Why do I constantly speak out on this issue? Why am I so blunt in my conversations with party leadership about their insulting approach to the Black community?
The answer is quite simple. I am quite convinced that our message is right for the Black community. I am so convinced that I am will to take my beliefs to the marketplace of ideas, i.e., the public, and know that my arguments will carry the day.
I can count on two hands the number of Black Republicans I would want in the trenches with me, and probably less than three of that actually live and work in the Washington, D.C. area.
If you are too afraid to speak to a reporter on the record about these issues, I in no way would ever want you on my side in a war; at the first sign of trouble, you would sell me out or simply abandon me.
I constantly get calls from the media who are frustrated with the dearth of Black Republicans they can get to go on the record for a story.
If President Trump is satisfied with getting only eight percent of the Black vote, then he should continue to do what he is doing, but if he wants to break into the high teens by 2020, then he needs to surround himself with Blacks who know what they are doing.
If the president wants proof of concept, he only needs to look at my Super PAC, Black Americans for a Better Future (www.bafbf.org). We are the first and only Super PAC established to get more Blacks involved in the Republican Party with a focus solely on the Black entrepreneur.
Nowhere else will you find a collection of videos and photos of Black Republicans who cannot be called an Uncle Tom or a sellout. These are the Blacks the party needs to be highlighting and promoting, not these inexperienced millennials and other Blacks, who have absolutely no credibility within our community.
The Black entrepreneurs are the real leaders in the Black community, not the media-appointed charlatans that Sessions met with last week. Until the Republican Party comes to this realization, they will continue to get miniscule levels of Black support.
I’m officially coming out of the closet as a Black Democrat. I expect to be on President Trump’s schedule by Thursday. RNC chair Ronna Romney McDaniel will call me and tell me how courageous I am.
I’ll use the opportunity to talk to her about getting Blacks more involved in the party—the Republican Party—because, at the end of the day, what do they have to lose?
Raynard Jackson is founder and chairman of Black Americans for a Better Future (BAFBF), a federally registered 527 Super PAC established to get more Blacks involved in the Republican Party. BAFBF focuses on the Black entrepreneur. For more information about BAFBF, visit www.bafbf.org. You can follow Raynard on Twitter @Raynard1223.