The facts speak for themselves: It was Republicans, not Democrats, who crafted, implemented, and continue to promote Affirmative Action.
Republican President Richard Nixon started Affirmative Action in 1969 with his Philadelphia Plan, as crafted by black Republican Arthur Fletcher, that set the nation’s first goals and timetables for awarding federal contracts. Democrats turned Affirmative Action into an unfair quota system, harming blacks with social promotions where may blacks were given diplomas even though they could not read, write, or do math.
In the recent University of Michigan case, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected that school’s unfair quota system while upholding the Republican ideal of diversity. Republicans believe that hiring and selection should e color blind, based solely on qualifications, not on quotas or racial preferences. These beliefs were shared by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Frederick Douglass who were both Republicans.
Under President Nixon, Congress passed the 1972 Equal Employment Opportunity Act which gave the Civil Rights Commission the authority to take legal action to stop discriminatory employment practices. This act paved the way for President Nixon to issue Executive Order 11248 that included the nation’s first affirmative action programs designed to overcome the harm done by Democrat President Woodrow Wilson when he kicked all of the blacks out of federal government jobs in 1912.
In 1973, the Republican administration passed the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act to provide federal funding to train unskilled minority workers for jobs in federally assisted programs. Under President Reagan, the Federal Contract Compliance and Workforce Development Act of 1988 was passed to improve enforcement of affirmative action requirements in federal contracts and increase funding for job training for women and minorities.
So, what happened with Affirmative Action while Bill Clinton was president? On December 15, 1994, the Honorable Judge David V. Kenyon ordered the Clinton administration to force the Pacific Maritime Association (a group of l00 shipping companies) to develop an affirmative action plan to stop discrimination against blacks, Hispanics and female longshore workers along the west coast. Clinton left office six years later, never having forced the companies to develop such a plan. In 1995, the Clinton administration filed a reverse discrimination lawsuit against Illinois State University on behalf of a group of white janitors.
On December 3, 2002, President Clinton spoke to the Democratic Leadership Council at New York State University. He suggested a plan for Democrats to re-gain the White House. None of his recommendations dealt with providing more civil rights protection for blacks nor did they include improving the deplorable conditions in black communities, all of which are run by Democrats. His only reference to civil rights dealt with civil rights for gays. His only reference to re-building communities dealt with re-building communities in other countries under the Marshall Plan. Note that Bill Clinton’s mentor was J. William Fullbright, a staunch segregationist. None of Clinton’s inner-circle of advisors were black.
While the debate about Affirmative Action continues, President George W. Bush has been busy walking the walk. Quietly, President Bush has consistently practiced what he preached by appointing well-qualified blacks, Latinos, Asians, and women to high level, key positions in his Administration.
Bush’s secretary of state was a black man.
Bush’s second secretary of state was a black woman.
Bush’s national security advisor was a black woman.
Bush’s director of personnel management was a black woman.
Bush’s assistant attorney general was a black man.
Bush’s chairman of the FCC was a black man.
Bush’s secretary of education was a black man.
Bush’s director of HUD was a black man.
Bush’s assistant secretary of education of education was a black man.
Bush’s White House legal counsel was a Hispanic man.
Bush’s director of Small Business Administration was a Hispanic man.
Bush’s secretary of labor was an Asian woman.
Bush’s secretary of transportation was an Asian man.
Not only did President Bush place these people in high paying positions with large budgets, but he is also the first president to approve funding to produce America’s National African American Museum and Cultural Center on the Mall in Washington, DC. In 1983, it was President Reagan who signed the bill sponsored by Republicans that established a national holiday to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.