Currently, Donald Trump is polling at around 2 percent among black voters. That’s low, even by Republican standards. Hell, Mitt Romney was able to secure six percent of African-Americans in 2012 nationally. Trump needed his black outreach team on the ground flipping votes like yesterday.
But the Head of Black Outreach in Florida, Sean P. Jackson, says the Florida campaign refuses to try to reach out to the African-American community. Jackson, a Republican and Trump supporter, said:
Mr. Trump really does have a sincere, passionate interest in a black outreach, but his campaign staff has dropped the ball. That all starts with Karen Giorno. She has repeatedly failed at embracing blacks across the state.
Giorno was promoted by the Trump campaign in July to work as a senior advisor to the national campaign and Chief Strategist in Florida. According to Jackson, Giorno told him that Trump didn’t need the black vote after he came to her with several suggestions on how to improve outreach to African-Americans.
Jackson was also recently booted from a campaign rally, even though he had been cleared by the Secret Service. Jackson said Giorno even pretended not to know who he was and refused to vouch for him even though he been in contact with Giorno for months.
And Jackson says the campaign is using the black vote more like a last resort:
I have been saying repeatedly that you cannot go into a black community in the ninth hour of a campaign and ask them to vote for a GOP candidate. The party has done a piss-poor job of courting the black vote over 50 years. So you have to have more vested interest in time and in your financial effort for the whole campaign, not just in the last 100 days.
This comes after Trump ramped up his outreach to African-American voters, after giving a speech highlighting the struggles black Americans face and blaming Democrats for their troubles. Problem was, Trump gave the speech in the 94 percent white city of West Bend, Wis. — which raised more than a few eyebrows. Trump gave a teleprompter speech to avoid such embarrassments as “look at my African-American over there,” and asked the black community to give Republicans a try:
I’m asking for the vote of every African-American citizen struggling in our country today who wants a different and much better future. It’s time for our society to address some honest and very very difficult choices. The Democratic Party has failed and betrayed the African-American community.
Yet, Trump has refused to speak at engagements like the NAACP conference, the Urban League, or the joint conference of the National Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists.
Jackson believes the campaign is missing a huge opportunity and that black Democrats are ready to leave the party, if only the Republican side would try to reach out to them. But that’s the catch-22, though the Republican party wants to become a more inclusive party, they fail at addressing issues that are important to black people, and so the cycle continues because black voters don’t feel included.
Jackson says though he’s disappointed with the lack of outreach to his community, he still supports Donald Trump.
My physical attitude now is that I’ve hit this crossroads, but my spirit will not allow me to stop working for Mr. Trump. I know this is much bigger than me. It’s much bigger than any one person.
The Wall Street Journal reported that indeed Trump is missing a big opportunity with black voters — they’re one demographic he hasn’t outright offended to the point of no return. Trump long ago kissed the Latino and Hispanic vote goodbye, the female vote, the religious minority vote, but he could still have a chance with black voters who are frustrated with the economy.
But with only 80 days to go until the election and little over a month before early voting starts, that chance is slipping away quickly, and it’s going to take more than one speech about some African-American issues in a white city to turn that tide.
Featured image via Facebook