February 27, 2020 By Andrea Widburg
From 1865 to 1932, African Americans were Republicans. Franklin Roosevelt, though, started the Democrats’ Devil’s bargain with blacks: government benefits for votes. This was a disaster for blacks, making them unhealthily dependent on the government. Trump, however, is moving aggressively to convince blacks that they’ve got nothing to lose by giving Republicans a try.
Despite Democrat efforts to claim Abraham Lincoln for their own, the reality is that abolitionism created the Republican Party and Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president. Once blacks were enfranchised, and for decades afterward, they voted a straight Republican ticket. For them, Democrats were the party of Jim Crow, segregation within the federal workforce, and the KKK.
The Depression changed this. Because they were already economically fragile, it hit blacks especially hard. Although Roosevelt was comfortable discriminating against blacks, his strong voting base in the Jim Crow south meant he sent a lot of New Deal programs that way. Inevitably, blacks benefitted from these programs, so they switched their allegiance to the Democrat Party.
This switch reached its apex with Johnson’s Great Society legislation. Whether or not Johnson ever said, “We’ll have those n*****s voting Democratic for 200 years,” it’s certain that Johnson understood that he could anchor blacks to the Democrat Party through perpetual government largesse:........To Read More....