As political analysts sift through the results of the 2022 midterms, they’ve come to a disturbing conclusion: Turnout among black Americans was down.
Unlike the increasing numbers of Hispanics who have abandoned the Democratic Party in recent years, these voters did not defect to the GOP. They simply stayed home — in significant numbers.
“The evidence so far raises the distinct possibility that the Black share of the electorate sank to its lowest level since 2006,” The New York Times’ Nate Cohn wrote, calling this “an unmistakable trend in the post-Obama era.”
“With the important exceptions of Georgia and North Carolina,” Cohn said, “the Black population share was below the national average in virtually all of the key districts and Senate contests.”
Cohn compared the gap between white and black turnout in Georgia, North Carolina and Louisiana in recent elections.
In 2008 and 2012, the years when former President Barack Obama was on the ballot, the gaps were 2 percent and 4 percent, respectively. Between 2014 and 2020, the gaps fluctuated between 12 and 15 percent. In 2022, the gap jumped to 26 percent.
The statewide turnout gap in North Carolina in 2022 was 16 percent. While this was lower than the national average, it was twice as high as the gap in 2018 and three times higher than in 2014.
Low turnout among black voters may have made a difference in the Wisconsin Senate race, Cohn wrote. Republican Sen. Ron Johnson prevailed over his Democratic rival, Mandela Barnes, by one percent, or 26,718 votes. Cohn pointed out that “the Democratic margin in the City of Milwaukee fell by a nearly identical 27,612 votes compared with 2018.”
This increasing apathy among black Americans, typically a reliable voting bloc for Democrats, has alarmed party operatives.
CNN spoke to a number of Democratic Party operatives about the implications of this trend, one of whom said this is “how we lose in 2024.”
CNN reported that analysts at Democrats’ House and Senate campaign offices have been digging into the numbers, precinct by precinct, to determine “how deep the problem really is.”
They’re already taking steps to turn the situation around. For example, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee recently expanded a planned black voter outreach campaign.
The article suggested the reason for the lower turnout among black Americans might be “footage of long lines to vote in predominantly Black neighborhoods and what they’ve heard about new voting laws.”
CNN quoted Democratic Rep. Steve Horsford, the incoming Congressional Black Caucus chair, who said, “It’s hard for people to vote when they literally feel attacked to vote.”
Sounds like they’re buying their own spin and may want to look a little deeper.
Democrats have become an out-of-touch party of elites. Other than expanding the “social safety nets” intended to keep black Americans reliant on the federal government, leaving them stuck in an endless cycle of poverty, what have Democrats really done to justify their perpetual loyalty?
Maybe blacks are beginning to understand that Trump did more to help them than Democrats have in 60 years.
He signed the First Step Act into law, criminal justice reform legislation that eased the transition of thousands of black inmates back into society. He reversed Obama’s federal funding cut for historically black colleges and universities.
In an October 2020 Op-Ed, Fox News’ Gianno Caldwell, who is black, wrote, “Trump also recently unveiled his Platinum Plan, which pledges to create 3 million new jobs in the Black community, open 500,000 new Black-owned businesses, and increase Black Americans’ access to capital by almost $500 billion over the next four years.”
Caldwell added, “On the other hand, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has a history riddled with policies that have harmed African Americans.”
While the majority of black voters still support Democrats, their gradual shift away from the party is real and Democrats’ concern is not misplaced. Republicans should seize the opportunity to bring them into our tent.
America has declined under Democratic leadership, and it looks like some black voters are starting to notice.
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