If Black Solutions Had Coattails, Black Folk Would Go To The Polls and Vote

coattailsBy Lawrence A Robinson
Barack Obama was a United States Senator from 2005 until 2008. He resigned his Senate seat after he was elected President of the United States. During his time in the Senate and during his presidential campaign, his followers grew in numbers, his influence expanded and his coattails exploded.

Political Coattails - The tendency for a popular political party leader to attract votes for other candidates of the same party in an election. For example, the party of a victorious presidential candidate will often win many seats in Congress as well; these congressmen are voted into office “on the coattails” of the president.

Barack Obama campaign cry was, ‘Change we can believe in, and Yes we can.’ That slogan resonated with most of the people. Senator Obama’s Presidential coattails were strong and long and a wave of politicians grabbed hold and rode into political office on the strength of his threads.

I am having a very hard time identifying a local candidate with coattails long and strong enough to pull our community out of the rubble that we are in. Someone who could win their election and is popular enough to carry additional candidates that support our issues to victory as well. There is no one with strong coattails locally. There is no ‘Barack Obama’ on the ticket.

Since there isn’t a single candidate with coattails long enough to carry our issues to completion, another option is to find solutions for those issues and build the coattails using those solution/strategies as the core. The core strategies are then presented to the local community. 

This then, is the beginning cloth and thread of our coattail.

First, we create plausible solution strategies for the issues. Then get local leaders and pastors to support those strategies. We present the ideas to the people for their consideration. Candidates that agree to work together on specific voter supported issues have the strongest coattails by virtue of their collaboration. These candidates will win the most votes and earn the most community support.

In order for our community to be successful, we need politicians in all areas who are strong enough and willing to fight the status-quo. With multiple elected officials in different areas of local government that support the core strategies, the coattail becomes even stronger and getting to solutions are more probable.

Democrats have specific core beliefs and the strengths of those beliefs vary among different factions of the party. Generating support among multiple politicians for specific issues is one way to create and strengthen coattails, especially if the solutions are targeting a certain neglected group.

This is how we will win in the Black community.