Sunday, May 11, 2008
The Obama and McCain Wars: The Black Vote by Akindele Akinyemi
The Barack Obama and John McCain Showdown is getting ready for battle. With Hillary Clinton out of the way this should be a battle for the ages.
The pressure is on for me to actually choose a candidate. I originally said I was not voting in the general election this year but with me running for Wayne State Board of Governors that has changed slightly.
Now we have some Black Republicans in Detroit changing their allegiance to Democrats because of Obama. As usual Blacks have no clue on the value system in our community. I have yet for someone to explain to me why I should go with Obama when I have thoroughly read his voting and position record.
If we pull up Obama's record on abortion you will see this:
We can find common ground between pro-choice and pro-life. (Apr 2008)
Undecided on whether life begins at conception. (Apr 2008)
Teach teens about abstinence and also about contraception. (Apr 2008)
GovWatch: Obama's "present" votes were a requested strategy. (Feb 2008)
Expand access to contraception; reduce unintended pregnancy. (Feb 2008)
Rated 100% by NARAL on pro-choice votes in 2005, 2006 & 2007. (Jan 2008)
Voted against banning partial birth abortion. (Oct 2007)
Stem cells hold promise to cure 70 major diseases. (Aug 2007)
Trust women to make own decisions on partial-birth abortion. (Apr 2007)
Extend presumption of good faith to abortion protesters. (Oct 2006)
Constitution is a living document; no strict constructionism. (Oct 2006)
Pass the Stem Cell Research Bill. (Jun 2004)
Protect a woman's right to choose. (May 2004)
Obama's record on the budget and economy:
Can't do anything at home with $12 billion a month on Iraq. (Feb 2008)
Protect consumers with Credit Card Bill of Rights. (Feb 2008)
More accountability in subprime mortgages. (Feb 2008)
Bush stimulus plan leaves out seniors & unemployed. (Jan 2008)
Voted against limiting credit to 30%, because 30% too high. (Jan 2008)
Account for every single dollar for new proposed programs. (Jan 2008)
Help the homeowners actually living in their homes. (Jan 2008)
Bankruptcy bill pushed by banks &. (Jan 2008)
Lack of an energy policy is a financial burden. (Jan 2008)
Bush & GOP dug budget hole; need years to dig out. (Dec 2007)
Save $150 billion in tax cuts for people who don't need them. (Dec 2007)
Take China "to the mat" about currency manipulation. (Dec 2007)
Rejects free market vision of government. (Oct 2007)
Obama's record on affirmative action:
Apply affirmative action to poor white college applicants. (Apr 2008)
Fight job discrimination to give women equal footing at jobs. (Feb 2008)
Remove discriminatory barriers to the right to vote. (Feb 2008)
Benefited from affirmative action but overcame via merit. (Dec 2007)
Include class-based affirmative action with race-based. (Oct 2007)
Better enforce women's pay equity via Equal Pay Act. (Aug 2007)
Blacks should infiltrate mainstream to affect change. (Aug 2007)
African-Americans vote Democratic because of issue stances. (Jul 2004)
Obama's record on Gay Rights:
Being gay or lesbian is not a choice. (Nov 2007)
Decisions about marriage should be left to the states. (Oct 2007)
Homosexuality no more immoral than heterosexuality. (Oct 2007)
Ok to expose 6-year-olds to gay couples; they know already. (Sep 2007)
Has any marriage broken up because two gays hold hands? (Aug 2007)
We need strong civil unions, not just weak civil unions. (Aug 2007)
Legal rights for gays are conferred by state, not by church. (Aug 2007)
Disentangle gay rights from the word "marriage". (Aug 2007)
Gay marriage is less important that equal gay rights. (Aug 2007)
Gay rights movement is somewhat like civil rights movement. (Aug 2007)
Let each denominations decide on recognizing gay marriage. (Jul 2007)
Supports health benefits for gay civil partners. (Oct 2006)
Opposes gay marriage; supports civil union & gay equality. (Oct 2006)
Obama on Education:
Evolution & science aren't incompatible with Christian faith. (Apr 2008)
Children's First Agenda: zero to five early education. (Feb 2008)
$4,000 college tuition for 100 hours' public service a year. (Feb 2008)
Put billions of dollars into early childhood education. (Jan 2008)
Need after-school and summer programs with good parenting. (Jan 2008)
Get parents re-engaged in educating the children. (Dec 2007)
We need a sense of urgency about improving education system. (Sep 2007)
Nationwide program to reconstruct crumbling school buildings. (Sep 2007)
STEP UP: summer learning opportunities for disadvantaged. (Aug 2007)
We left the money behind for No Child Left Behind. (Aug 2007)
Obama on families and children:
Teach both abstinence and contraception to teens. (Apr 2008)
Expand flex-work & Family and Medical Leave Act. (Feb 2008)
Parents should control what's coming over the airwaves. (Jan 2008)
Restore dream of making children's lives better than parents. (Dec 2007)
All kids should learn about sexual abuse. (Jul 2007)
Sex Education for Kindergarten is OK. (Jul 2007)
Obama on Universal Health Care:
Universal health care means anyone who wants it can get it. (Feb 2008)
Insurers are happy to have a mandate; issue is affordability. (Feb 2008)
Voluntary universal participation, like in Medicare Part B. (Feb 2008)
Mandating kids' insurance ok; mandating adults has problems. (Feb 2008)
Young adults up to age 25 can be covered under parents' plan. (Feb 2008)
His plan does more than anybody to reduce costs. (Feb 2008)
His health plan does not leave 15 million people uncovered. (Feb 2008)
Adults will get health care as they can afford it. (Feb 2008)
AdWatch: punishing uninsured families doesn't make sense. (Feb 2008)
I think you get how liberal this guy really is. Yes, the Republicans have not done a good job in defending their values either but my God do you really want someone like Obama in the White House?
He will be in the White House come January 20, 2009 because I do not see the Republican Party coming up with a national strategy to sway Black voters to vote for McCain. Nothing is on the local radar, state radar or national radar. The Senator from Arizona is already in the hole with his age (71 years old). 99% of Blacks will vote for Obama once he receives the nomination.
What are the Republicans going to do this time? Spend $2-$3 million dollars on radio ads like they did before? Or just ignore the Black community because they already assume that Obama has locked up the Black vote. This type of pathetic thinking and planning is always going to doom us. It did not help at all for Sean Hannity to consistently attack Rev. Jeremiah Wright and for Rush Limbaugh to tell Republican voters in Indiana to cross over the vote to defeat Obama. All you are doing is pissing off more Blacks who would be Republicans but would rather stick with the Democratic Party.
The Republican Party must design a serious plan to gain the attention of Blacks here in the urban communities. The ignoring the urban community in each state where there is a large Black population must cease. In Indianapolis the Republicans are doing a horrible job in attracting Blacks because of the lack of consideration of those who might be interested.
I cannot see McCain gaining 10% of the Black vote against Obama in the general election. That is a tough sell. He could get 15% of the Black vote if he was going up against Hillary Clinton.
But as for me I am not swaying either way for now. I am not the type of person who swings for the candidate because he is Republican. Remember, this is the same McCain who voted against a MLK holiday in Arizona (remember the Public Enemy song By The Time I Get To Arizona?). Now he claims he was wrong. What the hell did you vote against it in the first place when MLK was a Republican? Can we say race was involved in this original decision?
Maybe the National Republican Party is not interested in Black people after all. Remember the "Give us a chance and we will give you a choice" campaign by the RNC back in 2006? Blacks in our community did not take a chance on the Republicans and their choice was Democrats. Again, what will we do now in 2008?
Just like the Democrats take advantage of the Blacks the Republicans ignore the fact that values must come first not greed and money. Politics is just that..many tricks. My bigger concern is how Black Republicans wait for the RNC to send them money for their grassroots efforts. With Blacks generating over $800 billion a year in the U.S. economy we should fund our own efforts. I have no patience waiting for a organization that is out of touch with their own White constituency let alone Blacks and other minorities.
What I urge people to do is vote your values first. I am voting my values not just the party. I love how some of these old time Republicans like to use scare tactics against me when criticizing our party when knowing dog gone well you have no inroads in the Black community from a grassroots level. So, in other words get behind me Satan and follow the leader because you need true urban conservatives like myself who can reach out to people who are sitting on the fence in Detroit, Benton Harbor or Saginaw.
We can sit all day and talk about how the Democrats have done this and how they have turned our inner cities into socialist wastelands. I think we know that...even some of the Democrats who I have spoken with have concluded with our positions. However, we are NOT making the connection between being a true Republican who live and practice what we preach and how it can benefit the Black community. If we were making progress then Obama would not be popular among Black folks. We make excuses about how the "liberal" media suppresses our message. Have we forgotten about the power of blogging, podcasting and Internet and Satellite radio? What about all of those Black Republicans who are multi-millionaires who can help get the message of hope out? How many of them have bought ads for the Black Republican magazine that is published by the National Black Republican Association? Why did the Black Family Channel have to fold? How come we are NOT supporting our urban conservative radio shows on the air right now? Are you even listening to my podcast at www.michiganminorityreport.com?
My point is this...regardless of what you call yourself (Democrat, Independent or Republican) we are STILL our worst enemy in our community. It's almost like moving from liberal plantation to the conservative plantation to the independent plantation. All three plantations lack a true vision and focus on what we need to do for our community. Liberals believe in the most asinine values like abortion, same sex marriage, welfare, failing public schools, universal health care and bringing the troops home from Iraq. Conservatives, on the other hand, feel that Blacks should vote Republicans because they reject those values but use God and the Bible as a wedge issue and a dividing point when conservatives should be in the business of educating the blind man and woman. Independents are not really independents but do not want to be labeled. However, in Detroit, a Black independent is really a Democrat because I have never seen a Black independent at a Republican function...ever. They never come out because race is blocking their hearts and I have heard some of these Black "independents" discuss how going to a Republican meeting is like going to a Ku Klux Klan meeting without the white sheets over their heads or a skinhead meeting. If they see Blacks in the Republican Party we are either rich, Uncle Toms or sellouts.
There is no way in the world that liberal theology, liberal education and liberal politics should be dominating our urban landscape. I do not blame this on White liberals, independents or conservatives I put the blame on educated and uneducated Blacks who know better but refuse to do better. We are our own worst enemy.
Remember Keith Butler and Mike Bouchard in that U.S. Senate race in 2006 where we had people inside the Republican Party working against Butler? Yet, they wanted inclusion in the party? Come to find out that Butler's own Black congregation sabotaged his election in the primary by voting against him (they mostly voted Democratic) because the congregation did not want to see him leave as Bishop of Word of Faith.
I want to see Obama and McCain go head up in a general election so I can see the strategy of the Republican Party as it relates to the Black vote. This should be really good.