Political experts say Democrats must mobilize Black male voters as the United States head for the midterm elections this week.
A new survey reveals that Black voters became less willing to cast their ballots during the midterm elections. The poll surveyed voters from different ages, gender, race, and income brackets. Black male voters comprise a significant number of the votes for Democrats. Furthermore, Black women represent another chunk of Black voters for the party. Hence, getting them to vote will lead to favorable conditions for the democratic party.
However, while statistics show a good percentage of Black voters siding with the Democrats over the Republicans, voters say that is more than just the statistical bandwagon. To voters like Al Heartley and Donnell Brunson, it will boil down to how politicians relate to and respect diversity in the country and their stance on abortion rights.
“At the end of the day, it comes down to the choice [of] abortion rights …as well as voting rights. Black men have a voice and a perspective. But, you have to acknowledge where I am as a Black person first. To me, that’s what Warnock and Abrams really do,” said Heartley.
Relatability for Black people
Voting for politicians means giving them a platform for change. So, Brunson said it is paramount that politicians relate with Black people. He openly supports Democrat John Fetterman for the Senate over Republican Dr. Mehmet Oz. However, he still feels that politicians have a hard time understanding the essence of gaining the support of Black in the US.
“It’s clear to me that they don’t have minorities or people of color in their inner circle advising them. So they’re assuming what we want. And we want the same things other voters want: jobs, economics, education,” Brunson explained.
“What’s unique about Black male voters is that they were Democratic voters; they were supporting Barack Obama at 90%+ margins,” said Terrence Woodbury, CEO of the polling firm HIT Strategies.
“Now that we’ve seen that decline to 79% or 80%, it is enough to make the marginal difference in states like Georgia, Wisconsin and North Carolina, where they have diverse candidates at the top of the ticket,” the CEO added.
Pollsters encourage the Democratic and Republican parties to pour their last-minute efforts into encouraging voters to cast their ballots this week. According to experts, Black people should get a top priority. Parties should lessen the enthusiasm gap should they want to make a triumphant finish in the midterm election.
“While this election cycle is being defined by democrats, by the threat of the other side. The threat of losing democracy that Black men are more motivated by the progress Democrats have made,” Woodbury added.
HIT Strategies surveyed Black men in the US and found that 73% think their lives have not improved since Biden became president. However, given the policies enforced by the administration, such as the bipartisan infrastructure bill, Child Tax Credit, and the police reform executive order, over 90% reverted their opinions and said there was an improvement in the country.
“It’s clear to me that it seems like we’re dealing with a messaging problem and connecting Black men with the progress being made,” Woodbury explained.
Photo Credit: Gallup