African American Voters Feeling Ignored in Indiana

From Time:

Even before the major distraction this week caused by the remarks of black liberation theologist and former Obama pastor Jeremiah Wright, black voters in Indiana have been feeling ignored. While both Democratic presidential candidates have been jockeying for the rural, working-class white voters who make up much of Indiana’s electorate, they have been largely absent from predominantly black neighborhoods that have historically been among the party’s strongholds. For much of the campaign in Indiana, as well as around the country, many black voters feel there has been little effort to engage them on issues that have particular impact in the black community, such as the home foreclosure and HIV crises.
I’ve been wondering about this. I’m disappointed that so far, Obama seems to be taking Indianapolis for granted. He hasn’t had many appearances there, while he does seem to be jockeying for the white, blue-collar crowd that loves Hillary, and that’s OK, I guess. But if he wants to win this state, or even make it close, he must mobilize and motivate black voters to vote in record numbers and for him.
Much is at stake for the Democrats. While blacks account for barely 9% of Indianans, they are a crucial constituency neither candidate can afford to alienate, or take for granted. Indeed, some locals are pointing to the way Obama conducted his campaign in Pennsylvania as an object lesson. At one point, the Illinois Senator was asked about his lack of activity in Philadelphia’s black neighborhoods and told the Philadelphia Daily News, “I’m a big believer in going to places where you’re weak, not where you’re strong, and reaching out to people you might not otherwise expect to vote for you.” Days later, after Obama failed to carry Philadelphia by a large enough margin to compensate for losses elsewhere in the state, the newspaper ran a story with the headline, “Did Obama blow the election by blowing off Philly?”
Will he lose Indiana by blowing off Indy? Quite possibly.
Hoosiers, you know what to do (and WTF is an Indianan?).

5 responses to “African American Voters Feeling Ignored in Indiana

  1. I think he’s between a rock and hard place here. He certainly does need to pay attention to his base and GOTV like mad, but he probably figures he has to show the Superdelegates that he can continue to expand it as well. And I know he could if the media didn’t get so fascinated with utter crap so much of the time.

  2. For what it’s worth, I was told last night that he will be having a rally in Indy on Friday or Monday. (fingers crossed!)

  3. He really needs to have a huge rally this weekend, and I think and have heard that he will. But ugh! Just announce the venue and time so that we can be there!

  4. Obama’s Race Against Race
    By Nicolas Powers
    From the April 25, 2008 issue
    A black man runs from a howling crowd. If he’s caught he’ll be torn apart. If he reaches sanctuary he’ll be loved. This ritual is the Sacred Lynching. It’s a scene from Olaf Stapledon’s science fiction book, The First and Last Men. Set in the future, humanity has mixed and few people are “white” or “black,” and the ritual is a nostalgic celebration of racism in a post-racial world. It resembles our own supposed post-racial politics, and I see Senator Barack Obama as that last black man on earth trying to outrun our media mob.


  5. Thanks for posting that article. I think it nails much of what is going on.

    Would you mind if I posted your blog on my blog roll?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s