Is the Left Losing Its Iron Grip on the Black Vote?
The left's behavior in the months leading up to this year's midterm elections reveals far more than mere anxiety about their results.
There is real concern that they might be losing their grip on African-Americans, their most reliable constituency.
They should be worried. African-Americans who, more than any other group, were promised "hope and change" in 2008 have seen plenty of reasons to lose hope, because the changes seen during Barack Obama's first six years have done them serious harm.
Democrats have gotten used to counting on well over 90 percent of blacks voting in their favor. If that figure had come down to even 75 percent in the 2012 presidential election with those abandoning ship voting for Mitt Romney, Barack Obama's 3.5 million popular-vote margin would have vanished.
One activist recently lamented that blacks "think the president is a savior." Well, that's what many blacks believe they were promised. This lady clearly thought so six years ago:
The guess here is that the woman interviewed still has to worry about putting gas in her car. Even after the recent fall in prices, it's still almost twice as much per gallon as it was in late 2008.
Actually, to my surprise and surely the left's chagrin, my guess was right. It turns out that in July 2014, the once euphoric Peggy Joseph was very disappointed in what had since transpired:
"(The) mortgage got worse and gas prices got higher."
"During that time, we needed a change. But a change for the better, not for the worse."
"The man behind the curtain is not who we thought or expected him to be."
The black community's suffering is deeply baked into the economic numbers.
Black employment per the government's Household Survey has increased by 1.4 million since the recession officially ended in June 2009. The good news ends there. Unfortunately, analysts at Sentier Research, working with Census Bureau data, tell us that during that same period, black household income fell sharply, and by far more than in any other ethnic group:
Looking at household wealth, "virtually no progress has been made" in narrowing racial disparities. On average, almost everyone is poorer, and those who were poor already with less to lose have been hardest hit.
Speaking of being poor, the African-American poverty rate in 2013 was 27.2 percent. That's a 2.5-point increase since 2008, and 1.4 points since 2009. At 12.3 percent, the white poverty rate in 2013 was less than half that of blacks, and had fallen to where it was in 2009.