By Helen Raleigh
Published May 15, 2019
As the Democratic Party continues lurching to the far left, there are at least four groups of traditional Democrat supporters who should do some soul searching and ask themselves whether today's Democratic Party and candidates still deserve their votes, given the rhetoric they are hearing and the direction the party is going.
First, African Americans. We all know that the Democratic Party has been counting on African Americans' steadfast support for several decades now. But, what have African Americans gotten in return? On the education front, the Democrats have consistently sold out young black children to teachers unions by restricting school choice. Such a policy ends up trapping many black children in failing schools, despite the fact that African American students in charter schools are scoring 4 percent higher on reading tests than those in traditional public schools and are more likely to go to college.
On the economic front, according to a BlackPressUSA 2015 report, under President Obama, the unemployment rate was at 14 percent and the poverty rate for African Americans was at 27 percent. But under President Trump, African Americans’ economic outcomes have drastically improved. Their unemployment rate dropped to 5.9 percent in 2018 and their poverty rate dropped to 21.2 percent in 2017 (the most recent data), both historical lows. With a strong economy, we can bring both rates further down.
The Democratic Party has failed to deliver the economic improvement it promised. Maybe African Americans ought to take their votes to a party that actually knows how to deliver economic growth in their communities.
Second, Asian Americans have also consistently voted overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates in past elections. President Obama received 73 percent of the Asian American vote in 2012. Hillary Clinton received 79 percent of Asian American votes in 2016. Yet the Democrats are bent on destroying what many Asian Americans regard as their sole path to their American dreams – a color-blind, merit-based education system.
Last year, New York City Mayor, Democrat Bill de Blasio proposed eliminating the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT) and replacing it with a new admissions process based on race, so that the student bodies of New York City’s elite public high schools will not be dominated by Asian kids. Despite many of these Asian kids coming from poor families and they get into elite high schools through sacrifice and hard work, not handouts. The Mayor's proposal has been facing fierce protests from Asian American families and their allies.
Last week, the Democrats in Washington State passed Initiative 1000, which reinstates affirmative-action policies for education and employment opportunities, all in the name of "diversity and inclusion." Anxious Asian parents point to the Harvard college admission scandal as evidence that qualified Asian kids may be denied their fair and equal opportunity to higher education for the sake of ill-defined "diversity and inclusion" goals. The American Coalition for Equality, on behalf of Asian Americans, has launched a ballot initiative to repeal Initiative 1000 in November 2019.
The Democrats’ relentless push for identity politics finally has awakened many Asian Americans to the fact that Asians’ overall success in the United States defies the racial grievance industry’s narrative that all minorities are hopeless and powerless victims of the white majority’s oppression. Therefore, the Democrats' big tent has little room for them.
Third, since 1968, 71 percent of American Jews have chosen Democrat candidates over Republicans. But, there are plenty of anti-Semites on the political left. Most notable is Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., who has made one anti-Semitic comment after another, accusing American Jews of buying political influence in the U.S. and owing "allegiance to a foreign country." Yet, not only is her seat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee still safe, but the House Democrats couldn't even pass a straightforward bill that condemns anti-Semitism.
Probably feeling emboldened, Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., who has made her own share of anti-Semitic comments in the past, stated in a recent podcast that she feels calm when she thinks of the Holocaust because her Palestinian ancestors, provided a "safe haven" for Jewish victims and suffered a great deal of loss as a result. So far, she refuses to apologize for her historically ignorant and highly controversial statement. And, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi chooses to stand by Tlaib and accuses Republicans of "misrepresenting" Tlaib's words.
It's clear that today's Democratic Party has neither the willingness nor moral courage to keep their anti-Semitic faction in check. Why should American Jews continue giving their support to a party that won't stand up for them?
Fourth, the vast majority of tech entrepreneurs are either Democrats or Democrat supporters. Vox reported that among tech entrepreneurs, "75.2 percent voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016, and 61.3 percent identified as Democrats." Following their lead, tech workers support Democrat candidates overwhelmingly as well.
Yet, the tech industry and tech entrepreneurs have received some heavy punches from the same candidates they help get elected. American tech entrepreneurs may want to rethink where to take residency because Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., declared that a system that allows billionaires to exist is "immoral" and proposed a 70 percent marginal tax for the wealthy. Ocasio-Cortez also took credit for bullying Amazon to cancel its plan to build a second headquarters in New York. Not to be outdone, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., a 2020 presidential hopeful wants to break up of big tech companies – Amazon, Alphabet and Facebook, and regulate them as "platform utilities." A tech industry representative calls the Warren plan an “unwarranted and extreme proposal.”
All these groups, African Americans, Asian Americans, American Jews and the tech industry have been hurt by liberal policies and rhetoric one way or another. They should re-examine their past steadfast loyalty to liberal causes and the Democratic Party, and maybe take their votes somewhere else.