Is the Congressional Black Caucus Irrelevant?

It was widely reported that the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) made a decision to boycott the inaugural ceremonies of the 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump. On the surface, their actions are clearly blatant and disrespectful to the traditions connected with the peaceful transition of power that has attended the presidency of our nation.

There are more ethereal and somewhat unspoken truths, however, that undergird the CBC’s bellicose tones. The inauguration of Donald J. Trump has turned a harsh, bright light on the CBC that exposes just how irrelevant and ineffective it’s been in serving the best interest of the black community.

President Donald Trump has announced publicly that part of his administration’s priorities is to focus attention on the inner-cities of America. He set forth a proposal while campaigning in Charlotte, North Carolina, called a “New Deal for Black America.” The New Deal proposes to “grow the African Americans middle-class through safe communities, great education, and high-paying jobs.” By making the black community one of his priorities, he has brought attention to the feckless legacy of the CBC to address these issues in the communities they represent. A simple observation of the caucus’s activities over the years will reveal that most of their efforts on Capitol Hill are spent advancing the Democratic party’s agenda related to socialized health care, abortion on demand, same-sex marriage, and gender-neutral showers and bathrooms. The caucus seems to be the tip of the spear for the agenda of the progressive liberal in America. It is outrageous that the caucus has made the LGBT’s agenda their priority above the increased poverty level among their constituents. Partisan politics have trumped the needs of their black constituents.

It is blatantly obvious that CBC members are benefiting from their positions personally and financially. Their families are not suffering and are reaping the advantages of having a spouse or parent in Congress. To contrast their success with the condition of the community, we would find a distinction that is utterly breathtaking. In each of their congressional districts, we would find the black unemployment rate unacceptably sky high. Broken families and single parent households are the norm, and increased crime and gang-related violence typify an ugly reality in far too many black congressional districts across America. The plight of black men and failed public education are major problems in communities where these so-called leaders serve.

The communities must ask the question: Why haven’t our elected officials set forth a strategy to address our unique needs? How is it that we keep right on re-electing men and women who have failed to address the urban rot where most blacks live? These questions must be answered; however, we must ask a more penetrating question in light of the new administration’s position of leadership in Washington D.C. How will the CBC work with our new president when they are collectively casting spurious and disparaging remarks about his legitimacy as our president? I submit to you, they are not available to work with President Trump. Their strategy seems to be to obstruct and resist any efforts connected with President Trump’s New Deal for our community.

In President Trump’s inaugural address, he said of politicians in Washington D.C.: “The establishment protected itself but not the citizens of our country.”

This statement certainly applies to the CBC. While our communities languish in poverty, they and their families are doing quite well. All indications seem to point to the fact that in a Trump administration, the CBC will be grossly irrelevant. Frankly, an effort to replace them is in order.

We must pursue an alternative leadership for our community, one that understands what’s required to take advantage of the new paradigm to connect with President Trump’s New Deal. That leadership and understanding will come from black conservatives. Their voice and perspective have been ignored and pushed aside by liberals and especially liberal media.

President Trump said, “ We the citizens of America are now joined in a great national effort to rebuild our country and restore its promise for all our people.” That, my friends, includes the black community. It’s a new day, and our opportunity is before us. Let’s join in and “make America great again.”

Photo credit: American Life League (Creative Commons) – Some rights reserved

StephenBrodenStephen E. Broden is the senior pastor at Fair Park Bible Fellowship, founder of Protect Life and Marriage Texas, and member of the National Black Prolife Coalition.

The views expressed in opinion articles are solely those of the author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by Black Community News.

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5 comments

  1. The Oval Office has much more influence over the inner city than does the CBC. They have suggested methods of improvement for decades, only to fall of deaf ears.

    • Pastor Stephen Broden

      Merdies, every two years black constituents vote for a representative to go to Washington and set forth legislation that will address the concerns and needs of their communities. The CBC has done nothing to fight for better schools, economic development, or to fight crime and gang violence. If your premise is correct that the Oval Office has more influence to address inner cities, then the last President did nothing to change the deplorable reality of inner city life. We can not excuse what is obvious to us all, our interests as a community have repeatedly been ignored by our elected officials. If things are going to change for us in Washington, we have got, to be honest about what the CBC has been doing for the progressives above the first duty to the communities they represent.

      • Excellent points Pastor Broden. May I say that in Los Angeles, we had an original member of the CBC, Rep. Augustus Hawkins, who for much of 60 years put forth anti-poverty legislation through the administrations of Earl Warren, Pat Brown and Ronald Reagan (Sacramento) and from Richard Nixon through George H.W. Bush (D.C.) and little resulted. He once told me that anti-poverty measures are “not part of Mr. Reagan’s agenda.” Some of these congresspeople really do care about their less fortunate constituents. I’ll keep voting…and reading Pastor Stephen Broden.

  2. In my opinion the Black Caucus and the NAACP are merely arms of the “progressive” democrats and their actions have nothing to do with improving the life of black communities.
    I personally support Star Parker and her pastor coalition. There are many organizations attempting to help black communities (sans a community organizer) to grow in the fields of education and business.
    The communities need doers not politicians with empty promises.

    • The CBC, NAACP, Urban League and SCLC do excellent work in reminding our elected leaders at city hall, the state house and on Capitol Hill about what is most urgently needed to improve the inner city. And they will continue to do so, even if they’re constantly disparaged and labeled “troublemakers.” It’s “good trouble.”