(NNPA)—Yes, and that is a very blessed thing. The Old Guard seems to be moving slower than ever and the “Party Loyalists” are clamoring for fresh ideas—ideas that they are not receiving from their leadership. The economy is in the tank and all they are concerned with on Capitol Hill is health care. We had better get involved in business development, deficit reduction, lower costs and taxation. Those are the only things that are going to get us out of our predicament. History will show that as this country teetered on the brink of financial ruin all they could do is hammer out some futuristic health care plan that makes no sense and will solve nothing. It is kind of like Nero playing his violin while Rome burned.
In congressional districts throughout the nation we are seeing new faces challenging those who used to be comfortable candidates. The new breed is challenging them on answers concerning contracting, education, economic development and an end to the housing crisis. The incumbents have to skirmish. We like this. A big surprise came when congresspersons from everywhere are seeking to be put on the record as pro-business all of a sudden.
Perhaps the biggest surprise is in the Republican Party. There are at least 32 persons vying for Congress this November under the Republican banner. Wow! There weren’t 32 Black delegates at the last Republican Convention. Unlike previous Black Republicans like JC Watts, Gary Franks and Ed Brooke who came from predominantly White jurisdictions, these new Black Republicans are jumping into traditional Democratic strongholds like Southside Chicago, Compton/Long Beach, Harlem and other “chocolate districts.” Times are changing and that is a good thing for all of us.
Of course, this is the first go-round for the new Black Republicans and most will probably crash on Election Day but it could mean a good investment for the future. What if five of the 32 get elected? That would certainly shake up Congress and the whole political landscape. JC Watts, by himself, mesmerized many with his strong persona and charisma. He single-handedly stopped the Republican House from discussing doing away with affirmative action. I remember him saying “until you come up with something better, we are going to leave it alone.” Respectfully, they backed off. Also, so many of these Black farmers are still looking for their settlement money from the lawsuit that was settled back in the 1990s. JC got all of the Black farmers in his district paid immediately. That’s the kind of leadership the rest of the farmers could use. Maybe more people like JC are coming.
Despite all of the gate-keeping at the Democratic National Committee some young up-and-comers are bursting through. Some career members are just resigning instead of facing the big fight (such as Diane Watson in Los Angeles). Another thing, the DNC had better put some people of color in high positions the way it used to be or the RNC is going to outshine it. Man! Do we miss the great Ron Brown? Things haven’t been the same since he left us (except for President Obama’s run). There are no Blacks in any kind of powerful position at the DNC and they don’t seem to care. Meanwhile, the RNC has Michael Steele who is proud of his Blackness and is certainly the real boss over there. It is making a difference.
Whatever happens, the new balance of Blackness on both sides of the political landscape should bring more thought and focus on Black economic development. Once we are empowered economically then health care, education, etc. will take form. Somehow it has taken us far too long to understand that.
The Obama administration has blown it. Allowing unions to try and take over our government in a neo-socialistic fashion is just plain repulsive to the majority of freedom-loving, free enterprise Americans. Those who are actually afraid have justification in that state of mind. Freedom is not free and we are going to have to fight hard to maintain it. Unions have destroyed our schools, jobs, manufacturing prowess and have never opened their doors to construction for Blacks, Hispanics and women. Yet, we have a president who just loves them despite the previous documented facts. Something is wrong and new leaders from both sides are starting to step up—none too soon.
Another big factor in the November elections will be the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. They are going to spend over $200 million on candidates. That is more than the DNC and RNC combined. Get ready, free enterprise will return!
(Harry Alford is the co-founder, president/CEO of the National Black Chamber of Commerce. Website: www.nationalbcc.org.)