Politics and Grassroots

Now’s a good time for minority outreach

President Obama is winning the majority of the American people with his rhetoric on the debt ceiling crisis.  But polls also show that he’s losing some support among key demographics – namely liberal and black voters, according to a Washington Post/ABC News poll reported by Politico.

If you’re looking for clues, stop right here Sherlock: the unemployment rate for black men is twice that of white men.  Economic policies intended to elevate the less fortunate are failing, leaving certain demographics behind more than others.

The case for smaller government and personal empowerment has never been more clear.  And the polls that show minority voters increasingly distrustful of the President demonstrate that, at least on some level, voters are also in a position to reject the big-government promises they have been sold for generations.

But only if the case is made to those voters, directly and on a person-to-person basis.

With the 2012 elections over a year away, it’s a good time for campaign organizations, party committees, and non-profits on the right to begin trying to make inroads into communities where they haven’t had much success.  It may take the form of voter registration or straight party recruitment efforts.

Imagine if a candidate like Michelle Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty, or Mitt Romney took the initiative to sat down with community leaders of black and/or Hispanic groups the way Herman Cain is doing with Muslim groups. It would likely be even more productive, since Cain is reaching out only after he seriously frayed his relations with that community.   The same outreach by key leaders of the conservative movement would be equally valuable.

It will still be low-yield; the cost per registrant will be high in the early going.  That’s the price of ignoring those communities for so long.  This wouldn’t be about volumes of new party voters, though.  Unlike many of the failing government programs that have been used to buy these communities’ votes in the past decades, this would be a legitimate investment in the future.

Cross-posted at PunditLeague.

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