Though the black vote has overwhelmingly supported Democrat candidates in recent decades, evidence suggests America’s first black presidency might coincide with a reversal of that trend. Entrepreneur, former presidential candidate, and talk show host Herman Cain published an editorial this week highlighting the result of polling that shows more and more blacks are now embracing conservative values.
More than a quarter of all black respondents indicated they identify as conservative, exactly the same percentage that considers itself liberal. Though this number is smaller than the 35 percent of the overall public currently self-identified as conservative, Cain explained that these results nevertheless suggest a shift in sentiment within the black community.
“The number of black who identify their ideology as conservative is higher than I expected,” he wrote, “but it confirms the testimonial feedback I get from black people who listen to my show, visit my website or attend my speeches.”
He made sure not to negate the importance of conservatives across all racial and ethnic lines while accentuating the positive news he identified in recent Gallup poll results.
According to Cain, these stats “refute the assumption that blacks are so committed to the Democrats and the liberals that they can’t be converted based on the facts when they are given the facts.”
More than four in 10 blacks consider themselves moderate, he reported, a slightly higher percentage than among the general population and evidence that “we have a lot of upside potential as conservatives.”
He cited the need to reach those with conservative values but who do not identify as such “because they are constantly bombarded with liberal messages” including class warfare and government intervention.
Conservatives have the superior message, he concluded, but must optimize their message to reach those outside the fold.
“The challenge for conservatives, whether elected or non-elected” Cain maintained, “is to do a much better job of communicating how conservative principles of lower taxes, smaller government and individual responsibility benefits everyone.”
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BCN editor’s note: This article first appeared at Western Journalism.