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October 19, 2004
Bush Doubles 2000 Support Among Blacks: Poll

The Associated Press reports that George Bush has doubled the support he received in 2000 from the African-American community, although he still trails John Kerry by a wide margin in this almost exclusive Democratic voting bloc:

President Bush has doubled his support among blacks in four years and Sen. John Kerry's backing among the key Democratic voting bloc is down slightly from the support Al Gore won in 2000, according to a poll released Tuesday. ...

The poll found Kerry receiving as much or more support than Gore among those age 18 to 25, those with less than a high school diploma and those making $60,000 or less.

But Kerry had 49 percent support from black Christian conservatives, down from the 69 percent Gore enjoyed in 2000. Bush was at 36 percent among the group this year, more than tripling the 11 percent he got four years ago.

Republican officials say they are making an effort this year to reach out to the black community. Campaign aides have cited Bush's support of school vouchers, public money that can be used to help pay private school tuition, and support of a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage as issues that might win him more black votes.

The result is an increase from the 9% he got in 2000 to an estimated 18% now -- a paltry number, and shameful in the face of continued policy indifference from the Democrats, but still a significant gain. It's even more remarkable given that Kerry has been spewing lies about voter-suppression efforts, both now and in 2000, in order to hoodwink black voters to support him. The Urban Legends Tour hasn't gotten Kerry the results he desired, apparently.

Without a doubt, this result should have the Democrats worried about their prospects in swing states like Florida and Ohio, where such a shift could cost them any edge they may hope to gain. Worse yet, it may signal a trend among black voters to give the GOP another look, as decades of unkept promises and dead-end handouts have left a large number of them stuck in failing public schools and violence-racked neighborhoods. The damage that the Kerry campaign has done to the Democratic Party may take years to fully materialize, but if this trend continues, we can project that they will wind up even more marginalized than ever.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 19, 2004 12:12 PM

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