Precinct 333

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

African-American, Republican, And Proud

I keep hearing from folks on the left side of the aisle that we Republicans are a bunch of intolerant racists who don't welcome minorities in our party. My buddy northstar over at The People's Republic of Seabrook has hammered on this theme repeatedly, especially how the delegates to the convention are not a diverse group.

Well guess what -- he doesn't have far to go to find out that he is wrong. After all, LaMarque, Texas is only about a 20 minute drive from our shared hometown. That's where he'll be able to meet Geraldine Sam.
"I think that the Democrats want us to come to the table to eat the crumbs, but Republicans want us to come and eat at the banquet," said Geraldine Sam of Lamarque, Texas, who is one of 20 black Republicans in the Texas delegation this year.

We've had a 70% increase in minority delegates this year, up to 17% of the delegates at the convention. Not a bad percentage, given the Democratic lock on the black vote. And while we lag behind the Democrats in the percentage of minority delegates, that might just be because we don't have affirmative action delegations with fixed percentges from each state that must be a racial minority, elderly, homosexual, or disabled.

Geraldine Sam is part of the wave of the future, an African-American woman in the GOP who has made it into the leadership of the party on her own merits, not by quotas. Other African-Americans are sure to follow, according to other observers of the trend.
"I do think Democrats have taken blacks for granted," said Cynthia Jenkins, an African-American delegate from Irving, Texas. Jenkins helps run the pro-GOP African-American Leadership Council in Dallas, which has produced eight delegates for the convention.

"There is a significant increase in participation here at the national convention — there are grassroots here," she said, though she did not estimate the number of African-American Republicans today. "In the next four years you will see another increase (of African-Americans)," she said.


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