All Articles Tagged "GOP"
The voting rights advancements made during the civil rights era are being eroded. Take recent Supreme Court decisions on voting rights and political contributions as a examples of the regression. Last week, the court delivered a 5-4 decision in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission which eliminated the aggregate cap on individual campaign donations. In other words, rich individuals such as the Koch brothers can put all their wealth behind a candidate, giving other candidates with poorer supporters less of a chance to aggressively compete.
Another setback came with last year’s Shelby v. Holder case, which curtailed the Voting Rights Act and “inspired a spree of Republican-initiated voter-restriction laws across the nation,” reports The Root. The decision seemingly helps Republicans create voting obstacles for African Americans, Latinos and the poor. Among the tactics are voter ID laws, changes to absentee ballot access, and the purging of voter rolls.
And to many the GOP is being helped by the Supreme Court, who among other moves last year knocked down a central provision of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. This allowed several , mainly Southern, to change their election laws without Justice Department approval. As such North Carolina has passed the country’s most harsh restrictions on voting, eliminating same-day voter registration; cutting early voting down to 10 days from 17; mandating a photo ID requirement; and stopping straight-ticket party voting. Since last year, nine states have passed more restrictive voting laws. Other states, such as Ohio and Wisconsin, are in the process of enacting new voting restrictions as well.
Obama’s victory caused shifts in both voter turnout and the composition of the American electorate. For the first time in history, African Americans voted in larger numbers than whites. Because of this, the chances that in 2016 White House would continue to be held Democrats were high–until these latest court decisions. Just this weekend, The New York Times took a look at the battle going on in swing states, where new rules, including shorter windows for casting a vote, are having a disproportionate impact on black voters. “Democrats and other critics of the laws say that in the face of shifting demographics, Republicans are trying to alter the rules and shape the electorate in their favor,” the article says. “Those most affected by the restrictions are minorities and the urban poor, who tend to vote Democratic.”
Expanding in these new court decisions, the G.O.P. is bidding to limit voting in swing states. Some states are even pondering mandating proof of citizenship, like a birth certificate or a passport, Arizona and Kansas have already done so.
Democrats aren’t taking all this lying down. Dems in North Carolina, for example, are pushing back against what is now the nation’s most restrictive voting laws, passed by Republicans last year. The new laws greatly reduce the number of early voting days and put rules in place that make it more harder for people to register to vote, cast provisional ballots or, in a some cases, vote absentee.
To counter the GOP moves, Democrats have tried to make it easier for people to sign up to vote, including online voting and registration. California, Colorado, Maryland, Arizona and Kansas have started online registration.
Are you registered to vote? Midterm elections are around the corner.
On Sunday, the Republican National Committee tweeted out an ill-advised tribute to civil rights icon Rosa Parks, praising the late activist for “her role in ending racism.”
Today we remember Rosa Parks’ bold stand and her role in ending racism. pic.twitter.com/uxIj1QmtkU
— RNC (@GOP) December 1, 2013
The message was widely mocked by Twitter users who pointed out that the end of racism was news to them:
BREAKING: GOP says racism is over. In related news: “We were joking about that Kenyan-Muslim-socialist-dictator-Madrassa-foodstamp thing.”
— Goldie Taylor (@goldietaylor) December 1, 2013
— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) December 1, 2013
Read more at BlackVoices.com.
From The Grio
A Nevada assemblyman came under fire Monday after a YouTube video surfaced in which he told a Republican gathering he would vote to allow slavery if that is what his constituents wanted him to do.
“If that’s what they wanted, I’d have to hold my nose … they’d probably have to hold a gun to my head, but yeah,” Assemblyman Jim Wheeler told members of the Storey County Republican Party at a meeting in August.
His comments were swiftly denounced by Republicans and Democrats alike.
“Assemblyman Wheeler’s comments are deeply offensive and have no place in our society,” Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval said in a statement. “He should retract his remarks and apologize.”
U.S. Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., called Wheeler’s comments “insensitive and wrong,” while the Assembly Democratic caucus said they were “reprehensible and disgusting.”
Senate Minority Leader Michael Roberson, R-Henderson, on Twitter said Wheeler’s comments are “outrageous, they are embarrassing and they are just plain sad.”
“It’s time for Jim Wheeler to find a new line of work,” Roberson said.
Wheeler, a freshman lawmaker representing District 39, said his remarks were taken out of context and that he was trying to make a point that he was elected to represent his constituents.
Read more at TheGrio.com
Despite Stacey Dash’s support, I’m pretty sure Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan (who she gushed about on Piers Morgan) and Mitt Romney (who she publicly endorsed on Twitter) have never seen an episode of Single Ladies. Nonetheless, with an acting career that’s sliding down the drain, do I think Dash is milking this whole “Black Republican” thing? Absolutely. In fact, I view her rebirth into conservative Republicanism the same way I view Miley Cyrus’ risqué twerk-filled antics: A cry for attention and a ruse to stay relevant.
After she endorsed Romney, Dash’s Twitter follower count went up by 30,000. Her name has been splashed all over social media and she’s getting calls for interviews on CNN, Fox News, and ABC. She realized that being a conservative Black woman was profitable. And now with a new book coming, Not Black Enough, it’s time to drum up a little publicity with some Obama-bashing on Fox.
Twitter has been vocal in its backlash against Dash’s various conservative comments. On Piers Morgan, she responded: “I really don’t understand the fury.”
I will be happy to explain why so many people, including myself, think her “Black Republican” stint is bizarre. First, she’s technically unemployed, part of a group of people often overlooked by the GOP. As we speak, conservative Republicans are throwing a toddler’s tantrum over Obamacare and the debt ceiling at the expense of 800,000 furloughed federal workers.
Second, she’s African American. This isn’t to say that there are no African American Republicans. But there have been many recent cases in which Republicans have painted African Americans as “lazy criminals” and have otherwise supported policies and programs that negatively impact the black community. The GOP fails to acknowledge that even African Americans with advantages are at a disadvantage: A multitude of studies have shown that housing, business loan, and job discrimination are still disproportionately affecting Blacks.
And lastly Dash is a woman; a thrice-divorced woman at that. She split from Emmanuel Xuereb because he was allegedly “physically violent.” Last year, there was a Republican-endorsed bill that didn’t recognize domestic violence as grounds for divorce. Republican Wisconsin Rep. Don Pridemore said, “Instead of leaving an abusive situation, women should try to remember the things they love about their husbands.” And after a plague of chauvinistic comments from the GOP, how could anyone believe they have a woman’s best interests at heart?
And from what I understand, she’s a single mother of two children. The aforementioned bill also labelled single motherhood as “child abuse.”
African Americans are not a monolithic group and I don’t think all Blacks should be Democrats. In my opinion, it’s just a matter of where you’re positioned in life and which party would provide you the best opportunities. A Black CEO of a Fortune 500 company might benefit more from voting Republican. A middle-class African-American college student, on the other hand, might be better off on the left.
That being said, I’m definitely side-eying Stacey Dash as a vocal GOP affiliate. And the fact that she advertised Not Black Enough on FOX News’ Hannity convinced me that she’s exploiting her so-called “conservatism” for a career boost more so than for a true political agenda.
It’s no secret that as 2016’s presidential election approaches, Republicans need to lure African Americans, Hispanic voters, a growing minority, and other racial groups to the right to have any chance of winning. Unfortunately for the GOP, there are other alarming members of the populace that may foreshadow their failure in the next election.
Single mothers, who are overwhelmingly Democratic, are on the rise, according to the The Washington Post. A half a century ago, unmarried single mothers only represented less than one percent of America. Currently, a report by the Pew Research Center says, mommies who have children out of wedlock constitute 11 percent of the United States.
The last presidential election with Obama emerging as victorious sent unnerving shockwaves through the GOP. There was a revelation that appealing solely to White and rural-dwelling voters was not sufficient. The changing demographics of the United States are posing a threat to Republicans in office across the country.
Back in 2008, Obama gained 74 percent of the single mom vote. Now with the steady increase of moms raising kids on their own, the number of women expected to vote in favor of the Democrats for the next presidential race is climbing as well.
These never-married single moms are generally African American or Latina and under the age of 30. It is certainly no surprise that Blacks and Hispanics heavily supported Democrats as exit polls demonstrated last year; the real shocker lies in the fact that white single moms are beginning to lean towards the left as well.
Among white single mothers, 56 percent voted for Obama while a feeble 43 percent favored Romney. Single mothers of all races who had a household income of less than $50,000 supported Obama with 79 percent of their votes.
Not only are single moms gaining potency in the presidential race, but young voters are as well. Exit polls of 2004 demonstrated that Republicans (under Bush) won 45 percent of young voters between the ages of 18 and 29 years old. In 2012, Obama had 60 percent of the young population’s vote in that same age range, according to CNN.
Republican activists acknowledge that the reasons behind the GOP’s failure to attract more voters lie in seeming closed-minded, Republican voices having no filter, according to a report on Politico. A recent political and economic study by The College Republican National Committee that looked at polls for the groups we’ve discussed here shows that, on economic matters,“We’ve become the party that will pat you on your back when you make it, but won’t offer you a hand to help you get there.”
Do you think the GOP stands a chance in winning 2016’s election with an evolving American demographic?
The Republican party and the African-American community aren’t known for being on the same side of most issues. But as the GOP has upped its efforts to increase its appeal in the black and Latina community, MadameNoire to take a look of some of the party insiders.
It appears that the Republican Party is leaving no stone unturned in its latest efforts to reach out to the African-American community. The GOP, which already went on a listening tour, is even dong outreach to Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs).
After again being defeated by President Barack Obama who had the overwhelming support of minority voters, Reince Priebus, the Republican National Committee (RNC) chairman, commissioned a report to outline a new strategy for the party, reports Diverse Education magazine. The 97-page Growth and Opportunity Project report was unveiled last month and among its suggestions was to find new ways to reach the black community. And recommended seeking out HBCUs, which said the report are institutions at which Republicans can engage African-Americans “with the goal of educating the community on Republican ideals and the party’s history.”
“HBCUs are part of the African-American community. We want to be engaged in all parts of the African-American community. So it’s important for us to do outreach to HBCUs,” Raffi Williams, the RNC deputy press secretary and the outreach coordinator to African Americans, told the magazine. “We’re still in the planning process, obviously, figuring out what the best strategy is moving forward.”
He added, “We want to be involved with conservatives all across the country. Specifically if it helps us doing outreach to HBCUs, [those campus groups] will be very important for us and something that we hope to utilize.”
Dr. Robert Ford, a professor of chemistry at Texas Southern University (TSU) and an adviser to the Young Conservatives organization at the Houston-based historically black university, told the publication that the effort could increase GOP black votes in the next presidential election. According to Ford, the Republican Party initiative could help stimulate interest in helping reinvigorate the TSU group, which currently has just 15 members.
“I think there’s a newfound recognition that young people vote and that young people can be effective messengers in their communities that has brought more attention to HBCUs and other minority-serving institutions in getting out its new message of inclusiveness,” Ford said to Diverse Education.
With members of the right wing making comments like this about new MSNBC host Karen Finney, the GOP’s outreach efforts are being undermined by its own people.
SMH: Former GOP Leader Tweets Racist “Jokes” About Trayvon Martin, Hurricane Katrina Victims And The Super Bowl
Every once in awhile, you come across something that reminds you of just how racist and insensitive some people can be. The most recent reminder came from Todd Kincannon, former executive director of the South Carolina Republican Party. On Sunday, the lawyer utilized his Twitter page to send out some very offensive and callous tweets where he poked fun at slain teen Trayvon Martin and Hurricane Katrina victims.
“The Superbowl sucks more d*** than adult Travon Martin would have for drug money,” he tweeted
“@coreybking Hey what’s the difference between Trayvon Martin and a dead baby? They’re both dead, but Pepsi doesn’t taste like Trayvon.”
“It hasn’t been this dark in the superdome since all those poors occupied it after Hurricane Katrina.”
Of course, these offensive tweets among countless others that he posted sparked a tirade of people blasting Kincannon. Some even threatened to kill him for his obnoxious comments; however, this only seemed to motivate him as he continued to defend his behavior.
Yesterday, Huff Post Live gave Kincannon an opportunity to call in and explain his comments or at the very least apologize to the people he offended. While he did call in, he refused to apologize. Instead, he attempted to offer what he felt to be a “logical” reason for making the comments.
“One of the things I like to do on Twitter is I’ll tweet something inflammatory and borderline crazy just for fun and I enjoy watching people go nuts…”
When asked why he thought anyone would find making fun of Trayvon Martin humorous, he offered an extremely disturbing response.
“Let’s be clear, people have said all manner of just ridiculous, highly offensive things about George Zimmerman…”
“I think it is time for a conversation in this country about why a conservative isn’t allowed to state an opinion that other people happen to disagree with, without having death threats and being threatened with all kinds of various ridiculous things.”
“This is real problem we have. People talk about political discourse in this country — you might think what I said was tasteless, you’re welcome to. But should I get death threats as a result of it?”
“I think a lot of people need to learn how to take a joke and I’ll leave it at that.”
Ironically, his offensive words came just twenty-four hours prior to the day that Trayvon would’ve been celebrating his 18th birthday. I guess this just serves as a reminder of the world we live in.
You can listen to Kincannon’s full interview with Huff Post Live on the next page.
While the GOP is working hard to keep Susan Rice, currently the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, from becoming the next Secretary of State, other groups are working even harder to get her approved.
A diverse group of African-American women leaders joined together today to show their support for Rice. The group teamed up with the Black Women’s Roundtable (BWR), an intergenerational civic engagement network of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, to launch a campaign to “express their unequivocal support of United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice and to encourage Senate and congressional leaders to treat the esteemed public servant with respect,” announced a press release.
“It is important that women from all walks of life come together to push back when we see someone being treated unfairly not because of her work, but due to politics. Ambassador Rice has had a stellar career and has served this country with great dignity. We can not sit back and allow those who long for the days when white male privilege persisted in America to ruin the Ambassador´s reputation,” Melanie L. Campbell, president of the National Coalition and convener of BWR, tells us via email. “It’s a new day and Black, White, Caribbean, Asian and Latino women have come together to say, not on our watch! We are demanding that Ambassador Rice be given the proper respect appropriate for any other Cabinet-level member of a sitting Administration.”
The group of high-profile women signed an open letter to the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. Among those who signed are: Ingrid Saunders Jones, chair, National Council of Negro Women; former Essence editor Susan L. Taylor, CEO and founder, National CARES Mentoring Movement; actress Vivica A. Fox, president, Foxy Brown Productions; and Dr. Natalia A. Francisco, founder and executive director, Women of Worth & Worship, LLC.
According to the press release, the letter sent to Senate intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and committee ranking member Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) said that Ambassador Rice “has excelled throughout her career both in the public and private sector. Her commitment to international peace and the equality of all people should be heralded, not summarily dismissed for political gain and expedience.”
The letter even addressed the Benghazi incident as it pointed out, “While some members of the Senate have pushed back on their rush to judgment in the press regarding Ambassador Rice’s prepared remarks on the attack in Benghazi, we feel that the public integrity and reputation of this brilliant woman, who serves our country with great dignity, has been unfairly and unnecessarily attacked.”
Rice also got a major show of support from the incoming Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) chair Rep. Marcia Fudge, who at a recent press conference vigorously defended Rice’s qualification and accused the GOP of being both racist and sexist. She stated, “women and minorities tend to be the target of Republican attacks when they lose to Democrats,” reports The Loop 21.
In addition to the letter there is an online petition in support of Ambassador Rice. The twitter hashtag is #SupportAmbassadorRice.
What do you think of the Susan Rice backlash?
No doubt, you’ve been hearing a lot about the “fiscal cliff” that we’re perilously close to going over. On January 1, a number of tax increases and spending cuts will go into effect if this very divided federal government doesn’t reach a compromise. Faith in their ability to reach a resolution is low, which is impacting stock prices today and has been a factor for many business decision makers for months.
“Failure to reach a deal means tax increases and deep spending cuts take effect in five weeks — the fiscal cliff scenario that analysts fear could push the country back into recession,” says CNN.
The plan President Obama proposes would extend the Bush tax cuts for the middle class while ending them for people making $250,000 and more. This infographic lays out who would be affected by the tax increase and who wouldn’t. (Those who wouldn’t include individuals making less than this amount and “97 percent” of small businesses.) The My2K hashtag refers to the $2,200 that middle class taxes would increase should we actually fall off this metaphorical cliff. The White House has also been pushing their proposal hard on their Twitter account, with videos and other media included, and on this website.
Of course, others who reject the President’s plan have also used the hashtag to make their point of view known.
President Obama is also meeting with small business owners, chief executives at corporations, and middle class Americans today.
The Republicans, of course, aren’t taking this lying down. They’re also planning a number of events in Washington, with small business owners and corporate bigwigs, and in their home states, telling everyone who will listen that the White House plan will cost jobs. They say there should be no tax increases for anyone and want to reduce the size of government. They’re also in favor of spending cuts and entitlement reforms, a break with a pledge that many Republicans made with Grover Norquist, an anti-tax activist who founded Americans for Tax Reform.
“This is the public relations phase of the latest fiscal showdown in Washington, where direct engagement is no longer viewed as the optimal route to reaching a deal. As Wall Street shudders and Congress once again risks looking feckless in the face of crisis, both sides are locked in a battle to win over key interest groups — and the public,” writes Politico. The website notes that President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) haven’t met face-to-face in a while to discuss a compromise. Many believe they should meet, and meet often, in the coming days. But previous meetings over other issues yielded little. So the President seems to be opting for another strategy this time around.
A final compromise has to be reached in 33 days.