Wednesday, April 12, 2006

This McKinney Thing ...

You've noticed we haven't said much about this ... because it's stupid. But, the fact we're into week 3 on this is pushing us to the edge of insanity. From a shove, to a cell phone beatdown, to commentary on Black hair - it's not the kind of press African American Members of Congress deserve. We've had big media either ignore or gloss over significant pieces of legislation introduced by CBC members on such topics as immigration reform, Hurricane Katrina and abuse of Presidential powers. But, let something as simple-minded and trifling as what occurred two weeks ago involve an African American Member of Congress, and it gets front page spotlight.

Pulling on an old school hip hop adage, Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (D-GA) definitely gets the gas face for her mishandling of the Capitol Hill police debacle. Granted, there are only 14 Black female Members of Congress. But, it's unrealistic and assenine to expect any stressed and overworked Capitol Hill blue to remember several hundred faces in Congress, especially when there are many rotating in and out every two years. On top of that, Capitol Hill police are subjected to the grueling demands of millions of tourists who visit the Hill each year while performing their top mission: protecting the legislative branch of the United States government. If you're a Member of Congress (which automatically makes you a target of insidious geo-political forces looking to blow up your place of employment), biting at the people who protect you is the last thing you want to do. Plus, if Capitol Hill police were tasked with mandatory recall of every Black female Member of the House, wouldn't that constitute racial profiling? McKinney always seems more involved with the politics of race than doing what she was elected (hired) to do.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Democrats Getting Nervous About Steele

After a few rhetorical mishaps over the past several months, Lt. Gov. Michael Steele (R) is beginning to look rather formidable in the Black voter powerhouse state of Maryland. His likely opponent, Congressman Ben Cardin (D) (since Kweisi Mfume's campaign doesn't exist these days), should be sweating a bit with this latest information reported by The Washington Post:

An internal document prepared by a top Democratic strategist warns that a majority of African American voters in Maryland are open to supporting Republican Senate candidate Michael S. Steele and advises the party not to wait to 'knock Steele down. The 37-page report says a sizable segment of likely black voters -- as much as 44 percent -- would readily abandon their historic Democratic allegiances 'after hearing Steele's messaging.'

We were saying this several months back in our political predictions for 2006 - and we didn't take a survey to find that out. When you put a relative unknown face in the Black Maryland community - meaning Ben Cardin - up against a relatively well-known (albeit controversial) and somewhat respected African American - that being Michael Steele - this is what you'll get. And, frankly, Democrats may be on the verge of making the exact same mistake made in 2002 with Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, using old school names and faces to attract an otherwise new school, savvy Black electorate.

We're sticking with our prediction from way back in January 2006 (which the Post, the DNC and others conveniently ignored - no surprise since Black media always gets the shaft):

Steele wins by 5 because Cardin is too old school and there'll be a surprising number of Black folks (Democrats and Independents) who will go with who they know.

All that said, Republicans need not pass the Courvoisier just yet (or the bottles of Bud and Coors or whatever clean-cut, stripe-tie White conservatives drink these days in dingy pubs). Encouraging poll numbers in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Ohio don't necessarily mean a sudden exodus of Black voters from the Democratic party. The GOP has been real slick in packaging its Black celebrity statewide nominees in battleground states as a signal of African Americans suddenly going Elephant. That could be further from the truth. If anything, it's a signal of the Black electorate's growing and unpredictable independence as a voting bloc. Quote of the Day

"He wasn't even qualified enough to get in the booth." -- Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D), quoted by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, alluding to Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Lynn Swann's (R) longtime role as "a sideline commentator" for ABC-TV at college football games.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The Governor's Mansion Ain't Monday Night Football ...

Bloggers need breaks, too, so we hope you didn't miss us. But, we also hope you didn't miss the attached front page story at on Black GOP Gubernatorial candidate and former pro-football star Lynn Swann. You know Swann is giving the embattled and current Governor Ed Rendell (D) the fight of his political life if he's getting the expose on But, questions linger on exactly what Swann can manage since he's never really managed anything beyond a football and a sportscast.

Obviously, Pennsylvanians are a bit star struck. Let's see how that works out come 2007 if he's sitting in the Governor's mansion. Of course, we all think politics and governing is easy when watching it from the couch, but it's a different story when you get in that game.