In an opinion piece published Friday by Politico, Cleaver notes that Scott’s Senate appointment means he will be the first African-American in the US Senate from the South since Reconstruction.
“Scott is an honorable man, whose conservative political ideology and voting history seem to be in complete harmony with those of the majority of South Carolinians,” writes Cleaver.
He says the Republicans have talked about trying to include Blacks in the Grand Old Party for years. Cleaver observes, however, “but it has not been enough to show any signs of wear”.
Cleaver says it would be in the long-term interest of the GOP to start recruiting Blacks to the GOP and demonstrating genuine inclusion. The Kansas City Democrat says some GOP policies already appeal to Black Americans.
“There is a great deal of interest among African-Americans in the policies of fiscal restraint,” Cleaver wrote. He believes with more inclusionary policies and real access to GOP leadership, the Party could attract more Black voters and other minorities.
The Democrat says it’s not true that candidate Barack Obama was the first choice of many Black Voters because of his race.
“Yes, black people were proud of their support for Barack Obama, but there was no spontaneous enthusiasm until they became familiar with his political positions on the campaign trail. Originally, most African-Americans supported Hillary Clinton,”
That included Cleaver.
Confucius, the much celebrated Chinese sage once said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.” My hope is that with this historic appointment, the GOP will keep stepping”, Cleaver wrote