In the November 2016 Presidential elections, it mustn’t be forgotten that the Democrats took a slump in the white vote; forty-three percent of white women and only thirty-one percent of white males casts voted for Hillary Clinton in the last election. The Democratic nominee’s biggest support came from African American women, who overwhelmingly supported Clinton with ninety-three percent of the votes.
In the November 2017 gubernatorial elections in the state of New Jersey and Virginia, we saw a repeat of Caucasian voters once again leaning towards the right with their ballots. Fifty-one percent of white females and sixty-three percent of white males in the state of Virginia voted for Ed Gillespie-a candidate against immigration and for the preservation of Confederate monuments in public; meanwhile, in New Jersey, fifty-five percent of white females along with fifty-percent of white men voted for Republican nominee, Kim Guadagno – who promised to ban sanctuary cities. However, minorities came out in enough numbers to reject both GOP candidates in both states, particularly black women. African-American women gave the democratic candidates, respective to their states, more than ninety-percent of their votes.
In the past three presidential election cycles, African-American women had the highest participatory rate more than any other demographic in the nation. Black women voting for NJ’s Phil Murphy and VA’s Ralph Northam aligns with the consistent pattern of black women leaning left towards “progressives” more than any other demographic.
With black women proving to be the core and backbone of the democratic party – should black women become the sought out prize for the party or are they already a given to the point that their needs don’t have to be targeted or looked for? On one hand, the numbers prove that the reliability of the black female’s vote will lean left, however, it would seem more strategic for Democrats to focus on winning back the white base.
BLACK WOMEN VOTE TAKEN FOR GRANTED
Others argue that the Democrats trying to win back the white vote is a lost cause, as some of the white voters are not interested in “progressive” ideals as they are with the more Trumpian policies. Whatever the strategy is to win those voters and boost the numbers for Democrats in the poll, it would be in the party’s best interest to keep much of their focus on keeping their core happy and trying to win over the black women that didn’t vote in 2016; this can be done by focusing more on issues and needs of black women. In a poll conducted by the New Republic, African-American women jumped from thirteen percent to twenty-one percent when asked if they felt if the Democratic Party or any part represented their interest. The trend of mistrust should be alarming to Dems, as black women may no longer remain a given, begin to stay home, and no longer participate in the voting process if their needs aren’t addressed.