Democrats’ Black Male Voter Problem

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By Charles M. Blow, New York Times

Voters in temporary voting booths (Anna Watts for The New York Times)

Last month in a videotaped appearance for a “Pod Save America” live show, Stacey Abrams, a celebrated Democratic activist and the Democratic nominee for governor of Georgia, said that Black men have the power to determine the election in that state.

After explaining that some Black men chose not to vote because “often the leadership that gets elected is not reflective of their needs,” she said: “I know that if we have the kind of turnout possible among Black men and they vote for me, I will win this election. That is why my campaign has been so focused on making sure we’re addressing those challenges.”

As The Atlanta Journal Constitution pointed out, this echoed a statement she had made at a “Stacey and the Fellas” event in the state where she said, “If Black men vote for me, I’ll win Georgia.”

Why this specific focus on Black men? It is most likely because an AJC poll from July found that she was significantly underperforming with Black voters, with just 80 percent of the Black electorate supporting her, although Georgia Democrats usually get more than 90 percent of the Black electorate.

The campaign seems to be focusing specifically on Black men when considering this deficit.

Notably, Raphael Warnock, the Black Democratic senator from the state who is running for re-election, got the support of about 85 percent of Black people in the poll.

Now, there may be something different in the appeal of these candidates; there is definitely a difference in the quality of their opponents. Or we might simply be seeing the familiar sight of misogyny creeping in.

It’s hard for me to tell. While I wish I had the answers here, I don’t. But I will say that this trend appears to be bigger than just Georgia. We have seen a similar differential between Black men’s and Black women’s votes on the national stage. According to The Associated Press’s VoteCast survey, 12 percent of Black men voted for Donald Trump in 2020, compared with just 6 percent of Black women. This was consistent with 2016 levels, when 14 percent of Black men voted for Trump.

Blow’s opinion piece illustrates the significance of Black men voters in the upcoming election.

The NAACP has pushed to increase Black voter turnout. Even when Black Americans want to vote, gerrymandering may prevent it.

Find more articles like this in ABHM’s breaking news page.

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