For the RNC to have any vision for future success in near-future America, Republicans need to look at clues from the past 4 years to realize what must be changed within their political strategy.
The first big clue should have stemmed from the embarrassing lack of delegate diversity on the convention floor in 2008, especially considering the contrasts between the look and feel of the RNC in Minnesota and the Democrats’ convention in Denver.
The political urgency should have hit hard for some long-term changes after the election of previously little-known Senator Barack Obama to the presidency while riding the wave of over 95% of the Black vote, 67% of the Latino vote, and thousands of first-time voters that sought to be “on the right side of history.”
Even with the elevation of several prominent Black Republicans into office and high-profile positions, developing a deeper, stronger, and viable relationship with Black voters, the Republican Party has not gained much (if at all) over the past 4 years. Of course, this is just in time for yet another round of high-stakes races, including another race against a minority at the top of the national ticket.
Yet, if all these things over the past 4 years did not get Republicans’ attention enough for conservative politicos to radically change their viewpoints and approaches to urban voters, then the latest report from the U.S. Census concerning the “minority” birth rate as of 2012 should have.
If this second big clue does not resonate throughout the halls of conservative political strategy leadership, then perhaps the end is near for tangible Republican influence with the future generations of America on the larger scale.
With a new Republican initiative to tell the Black Republican story with more definition and personal appeal, perhaps the GOP understands that something substantive and long-lasting needs to be implemented. Without a consistent, aggregate effort that yields ongoing results, Republicans may find themselves on the wrong end of census numbers that will dictate how little they will win on the national and state levels of elections for years to come – and, as a result, how much we may lose in the future.
Despite the success of tea party rhetoric and campaigns over the past few years, the basic math is simple: Americans cannot have debt relief and smaller government at a significant level without fixing many of the problems where inefficient spending occurs.
Sadly, that spending – from outdated education models to bureaucratic mismanagement run amok for decades – happens in the major metropolitan areas. This often happens where urban voters are sacrificed to Democrats in a lazy quid pro quo trade-off with rural areas that previous Republican leaders signed off on for years. While “politics as usual” worked as long as minority numbers stayed at certain numbers, Republicans seemed ok with the trade-off, knowing that they could take almost 75% of presidential elections in recent times and occasionally control key houses of government.
Federal and state spending will never be curtailed, national homeland security (from street violence to other domestic risks) will never be optimized, and future economic and academic hallmarks will never be grasped within 21st century America if factors hindering their procurement – namely, the ills of urban America after decades of one-sided political leadership and influence – remain in place.
Nothing is in place to actively, tactically, and quantifiably change that dynamic without a serious and permanent directive from the Republican Party to compete for Black and urban-based voters from a politically systemic perspective. Only that can force system-wide changes to politics, civics, business, and society at some of the most problematic corners of government. From a political perspective, it makes sense for the survival of a party. From a historical sense, political balance in our increasingly urban nation is the only way to balance our government enough to force results.
For all of our sakes – whether you are a Republican voter or not – here’s hoping that the new initiatives and latest census reports prompt political leaders to have vision, act boldly and improve the future. And, based on our political form of government today, despite what you say, you need them, too.
LENNY MCALLISTER is a senior contributor to Politic365 that is regularly featured Wednesdays on CNN Newsroom at 12:30 PM Eastern and on CNN’s “Early Start” weekdays 5:00 AM – 7:00 AM Eastern. Hear “The McAllister Minute” on the American Urban Radio Network each week and check out his featured interview on National Public Radio’s “Tell Me More with Michel Martin.” Lenny will be a featured speaker at the Rally for Common Sense (headlined by Herman Cain) Saturday, May 19 in Holts Summit, Missouri.