Black Voters Gloomy About Current Conditions as Midterms Loom - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

With midterm elections approaching soon, many black voters don’t view current economic circumstances for them glowingly.

In fact, a fresh poll paid for by the new Black Economic Alliance PAC reveals that 62% of registered African American voters are discontented with the nation’s direction and convinced conditions are “poor” or “very poor” for the black community.

The findings stem from a poll of voters from the battleground states of Georgia, Florida, Nevada, Ohio, and Tennessee. About half of the respondents think economic conditions are getting worse for African Americans; 56% of respondents are tracking midterm election news and political information “very closely.”

The Black Economic Alliance is a U.S. political action committee started this year by black business executives. In August, the Alliance announced it would spend millions of dollars in the midterm elections backing candidates working to boost the economic interests of African Americans.

“In cycle after cycle, black voters have played a major role in determining who wins elections from the statehouse to the White House—but there remains a real disconnect between the elected leaders who depend on our support and the kinds of economic policies that determine the opportunities available to our community,” stated Akunna Cook, the Alliance’s executive director, stated in a press release.

“Our research sends a clear message to candidates and elected leaders on both sides of the aisle: Black voters are deeply dissatisfied with the status quo, and we want champions who will drive an economic agenda that benefits black Americans.”

Other findings from the poll:

  • The top five issues respondents would include in an economic agenda: Health care affordability (87%), investing in skills training (85%), affordable childcare (86%), college affordability (83%), and eliminating race and gender wage gaps (83%)
  • Just 14% of those polled believe economic conditions are improving

The Black Economic Alliance poll, which surveyed 804 African American voters, was done by telephone from Sept. 20–27. Based in Washington, D.C., the Black Economic Alliance includes a group of executives from a broad range of industries.

So far, the Alliance has endorsed over 24 candidates in key congressional, U.S. Senate, and gubernatorial races—including gubernatorial candidates Stacey Abrams in Georgia, Andrew Gillum in Florida, Rich Cordray in Ohio, former Tennessee Governor and current U.S. Senate candidate Phil Bredesen, Lauren Baer (FL-18), Steven Horsford (NV-04), Lucy McBath (GA-06), Debbie Powell (FL-26), and others, according to its website.

 

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Jeffrey McKinney

Jeffrey McKinney is a long-time freelance business writer and reporter, contributing to Black Enterprise magazine for several years on broad range of business and financial topics. He also writes regularly for Franchise Times, a highly regarded publication covering the franchise industry.


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