Republicans should focus on Blacks, not Hispanics

Filed under OPINION

I am constantly amazed by the lack of any meaningful, insightful post-election analysis on the various media outlets (radio, TV, newspapers). You would think that everyone is hanging out at the same places because all the analysis seems to be the same: “Republicans have to find a way to garner more of the Hispanic vote.”

So, if I am to believe these so-called analysts, the Black vote is irrelevant and non-existent. The Black vote is rarely mentioned as being important to either party.

Hispanics not a race
This is what the so called experts are missing: According to the Census Bureau, there are about 50 million Hispanics in the U.S. Approximately 12 million are believed to be in the country illegally.

So, that leaves 38 million Hispanics who are Americans.

Of the 38 million, approximately 40 percent are voting age population (VAP). Therefore there are about 15 million Hispanics that are eligible to vote.

Hispanics are approximately 16 percent of the nation’s population, but only 10 percent of eligible voters. Even worse, only 7 percent vote. The Hispanic population of eligible voter is smaller than any other group (VAP).

The VAP for Whites is more than 77 percent, for Blacks 67 percent, and for Asians 52 percent. Approximately 69 percent of Black VAP and 58 percent of Hispanic VAP are registered to vote; there are more than 7 million people in each group of VAP who are not registered to vote.

According to the Pew Hispanic Center, more than 25 million Blacks were eligible to vote in November. For Whites, the figure was 152 million. Each group alone was larger than the Hispanic electorate.

As you know, Hispanics are an ethnic group, not a race. And they can self-identify as either Black or White. Even in reaching out to Hispanics, some GOP handlers are ignoring the fact that there are Black Hispanics.

So, all the hype about the power of the Hispanic vote is just that – hype. But, the bigger message to the Republican Party is: Stop picking various demographic groups to be your flavor of the month.

Go after all the votes in earnest.

A change of policy can save the Republican Party.

New GOP leadership
But who is that leader? Who is willing to kick the door down and demand a change in policy? Is it current party chairman, Reince Preibus? Is New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie? Is it Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal? Or is it us? Is it that man in the mirror?

What are we Black Republicans willing to do to force change upon our party? I have tried but I can’t do it alone. Who is prepared to join me? Who is willing to stop looking for validation from Whites within the party?

These questions will be answered by early next year. Time is not on the side of the Republican Party.

Raynard Jackson is president & CEO of Raynard Jackson & Associates, LLC., a Washington, D.C.-based public relations/government affairs firm. He can be reached through his website, www.raynardjackson.com.

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