Young, black Americans are turning to the GOP — which needs them to survive
Among the key headlines from the 2022 midterm election were gains by Republicans among minority voters.
According to the AP VoteCast survey, GOP House candidates got 14% of the black vote, almost twice the 8% of the black vote Republicans captured in 2020 and 2018.
The difference between the percentage of black votes that Democrats got compared with Republicans was 68 points, versus a difference of 83 points in the 2020 election and 82 points in 2018.
This was even more pronounced among younger black voters, ages 18 to 44, where the difference between the percentage voting Democrat and Republican was 54 points, versus 76 points in 2020 and 75 in 2018.
The Republican Party is most aggressively taking root among younger black voters.
Per Pew Research, 28% of black Republicans are ages 18 to 29, compared with 17% of black Democrats and 10% of white Republicans.
My own sense is that younger blacks are less inclined to think of themselves primarily by race and less inclined to think of their future in terms of racial-group identity politics.
Pew Research data shows 58% of black Republicans say that their race is an “extremely or very important” aspect of their personal identity. This compared with 82% of black Democrats. And 21% percent of black Republicans, compared with 6% of black Democrats, say their race is of little or no importance to their personal identity.
Also worth noting is that 50% of black Republicans live in lower-income households.
So in general, black Republicans tend to be younger and poorer. This makes sense. These younger black Americans are thinking about their future and have a sense of realism that their future is about their own efforts as opposed to racially driven government programs.
Per Pew, 45% of black Republicans, in contrast to 21% of black Democrats, say that the future of black Americans depends on their own efforts. About half as many black Republicans compared with black Democrats — 44% versus 73% — see racial discrimination as the main barrier to black progress and achievement.
So change is underway, and this is good news. More in the upcoming generation of black Americans see themselves as the civil-rights movement wanted all black Americans to be seen — as unique individuals.
But this change must be greater and faster to slow and stop the leftward movement of the country.
Per analysis from the Brookings Institution, in 2022, among voters 65+, 76.3% were white; ages 45 to 54, 68.2% were white; ages 30 to 44, 62.2% were white; and 18 to 29, 56% were white. This demographic snapshot shows the future ethnic profile of the country: It is becoming dramatically less white.
In 2022, 72% of voters were white, and 58% of them voted Republican, accounting for 42% of the overall Republican vote. If the overall profile looked like it does among 18- to 29-year-old voters, 56% white rather than 72%, with no change in the percentage voting Republican, 58%, white voters would be delivering 32% of Republican votes rather than 42%.
It should be clear that, with the US population dramatically shifting to non-white Americans, there must be a corresponding dramatic increase in the percentage of non-white Americans voting for Republicans or we can expect the country to continue to transform to big government and moral relativism.
The GOP improvements (14% of black voters and 39% of Hispanic voters voting Republican in 2022) are not enough. Republicans should be taking a closer look at the positive dynamics driving young blacks to the GOP and use this message to reach more minority Americans.
That is, don’t bank your future on racial politics. Every American should be considered a unique individual, personally responsible for his or her own life. The job of government is to protect life, liberty, property and the pursuit of happiness for everyone.
Star Parker is president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education and host of the weekly television show “Cure America with Star Parker.”
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