Thursday, September 27, 2012

Race and the GOP

Oh goody.  There are 60 GOP blacks and Hispanics running for Congress.  So finally, the Republican Party is reaching out to minorities.

Or is it?  According to Patrick Reddy,
For years, since the 1960s, Democrats have courted the minority vote. Now, the Republican Party is getting more in tune with the new demographic realities of the 21st century.
He goes on:
The modern Republican Party has made solid progress in reaching out to moderate-to-conservative minority candidates who share their values on a truly colorblind basis.
Now that is all meaningless.  When you are "getting in tune" with demographic realities, it could mean anything.   And "reaching out to "moderate-to-conservative minority candidates."  What is all that about?

The truth is, as Michael Barone recently pointed out, that the Republican Party is and has always been the party of people that think of themselves as "typically American."  So, it really can't appeal to minorities until minorities start to think of themselves as, or want to become, typically American.

The telling fact is that the two black Republicans first elected to Congress in 2010 were Tim Scott (R-SC), an insurance agent, and Allen West (R-FL), a retired Army colonel.  How typically America is that?  Scott is representing a predominantly white district that includes Charleston(!); West's district now includes a sinuous district close to the Atlantic shore in South Florida.  The message of their election to Congress is that white Republicans don't give a damn what color you are as long as you can appeal to typical Americans.

The standout black Republican congressional candidate in 2012 is Mia Love.  She is running in a newly created semi-urban district south of Salt Lake City.  She's a woman from Connecticut that married a Mormon and eventually became mayor of a newly incorporated ex-urban city south of Salt Lake.

You can see what is happening.  The GOP is open, wide open, to talent.  It is recruiting minority candidates that have made themselves into typical Americans.  It is preparing itself for the time when the present minority population starts growing out of its "hypenated" stage and decides to become typically American.  Obviously the biggest target here is black America, artificially held into the Democratic Party by race hustlers like Reverends Jackson, Sharpton, and Wright that know how to play the race card and make blacks fear a return to Jim Crow.

From a strategic point of view, you can see the point of filling out GOP ranks with minorities.  It announces to minority individuals beginning to detach from the Democrats that the GOP has "people like me" in it.

But, for my money, the recruitment of minority candidates doesn't mean the GOP is "reaching out" to minorities at all.  It can't.  The GOP is based on the idea of the invisible hand and the human as an individual "responsible self."  The Democratic Party is based on the philosophy of suspicion, that "they" have gamed the system to keep down minorities, women, and the traditionally marginalized.

If you believe that you are a victim, or that you need the help of government to get a decent shake then there is nothing that is going to persuade you to vote Republican.  Democrats are always going to do a better job with their patronage/clientage politics at appealing to victims.

But the point is that, when any hyphenated American is ready to become a "typical American" then the GOP will have tons of office-holders that seem to be "people like me."

1 comment:

  1. It seems to me the Dems spend an inordinate amount of money trying to defeat minority and female GOP candidates — and I suspect that’s because it allows them to keep their “party of white men” narrative alive. (When you think about it, that “big tent” myth is really all the Dems have going for them.)

    It’s shocking that no one has ever called them out on this. If it was the GOP singling out minority candidates to defeat, we would all be called racists. But when the left does it, not a peep.