Few things irritate me more than the left playing racial politics. I’m embarrassed for my country when I hear Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton pandering to black audiences by speaking with a different inflection than they would use elsewhere. It’s even more puzzling to me that minorities do not appear to be equally offended by these acts.
With this in mind, news stories have started circulating suggesting the Republican Party is tossing around the idea of former Black Oklahoma Congressman J.C. Watts possibly chairing the Republican Party.
While we can’t discount Watts’ conservatism, one cannot be blamed for questioning the motives of the RNC. After all, Congressman Watts has been out of public office for nearly a decade. Is this the right’s version of racial pandering?
This cynicism presents a real risk to the GOP. People may come to a quick conclusion that Republicans are simply doing this as a cheap and easy way to attract minority votes – that they are not really serious about engaging the black community. After all, this would not be the first time the RNC has had an African-American Chairman, and the immediate reaction from the left to the appointment of Tim Scott to Sen. Demint’s newly vacated seat was that Republicans selected Scott as a “token.”
The Republican Party correctly believes they need to do more to reach out to minorities. The continuing shift minority voters made toward the left in the 2012 presidential election magnifies this need. Choosing Watts to assist the right with reversing the trend may initially appear shallow. It isn’t; moreover, it would be a great move for several reasons.
First, Watts showed great foresight in predicting the racial issues facing the Republican Party today. In 2006 he went on record criticizing the GOP for not doing enough to reach out to the Black community.
Additionally, Watts’ methodology for attracting minorities to the right would be to enlighten, not insult. Since 2008, Watts has been tirelessly working to get his Black Television News Channel (BTNC) on the air. In his own words, “There’s a whole lot more to the African-American community than entertainment and sports.”
Most importantly, Watts is looking at the long-term. He understands what is really needed and will not repeat the insulting, short-term, failed tactics of the past, as evidenced in his quote from Politico:
These old, tired, pathetic models of saying, ‘Okay, in the black [community], when there’s a presidential election, we will form an African-American Coalition for Romney or McCain,’ I’ll never do that again. That is a joke, that is so tired … It’s window dressing to say, ‘African-Americans for Romney’ or ‘African-American Coalition’ or ‘African-American Advisory Council.’ That’s insulting to the people that they ask to do it when you don’t put a permanent infrastructure in place to give it credibility.
This is who the Republican Party needs. He’s not a mascot, he’s the real deal. He truly cares about minority issues, fully understands the harm liberalism has done to the minorities, and can be trusted to make substantive changes to attract voters – not the cheap pandering we continue to see from the left.
- J.C. Watts for RNC chair? (politico.com)
- J.C. Watts mulls bid for RNC chair (hotair.com)
- J.C. Watts for RNC chair? (democraticunderground.com)
- J.C. Watts for RNC chair? (amren.com)
- JC Watts reportedly being ‘encouraged’ to run for RNC chairman (thegrio.com)