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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Congressional Black Caucus V Barack Obama... why can't they just get along?

AAPP says: I have been trying to understand why the Congressional Black Caucus and Barack Obama seem not to get along. Candidly, this appears to be a case of "old USA negro self -hatred vs new black political thinking and doing."

Outgoing Congressional Black Caucus Chair Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick, D-Mich.,

The Congressional Black Caucus announced new leaders without mentioning President-elect Barack Obama until asked. Members disputed the notion that his historic presidency would affect their profile or their role. Read more at African American Political

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Black Folks In The Obama Cabinet?

Now that Hillary Clinton has accepted Obama's sec. of state offer this may be a good time to take a look backwards. It may be wise for the Obama team to do the same.

Black folks, yes Blacks and Latinos Americans, like all Americans, are watching the new Obama administration closely regarding his Cabinet appointments. Many are wondering if diversity will be an issue in Obama’s Administration? In fact, many are wondering, will Obama's Cabinet favor whites? Black folks are even wondering if will get better Access to the White House.

As US Today noted a number of years ago, until Bill Clinton, Presidential Cabinets were overwhelmingly the province of white Anglo men. They made up 85% of the appointments by President Reagan, who over eight years had only one African-American and one Hispanic in his Cabinet. White Anglo men made up 71% of the first President Bush's Cabinet. (The Cabinet statistics in this story reflect those offices designated by law as Cabinet posts. Some presidents have chosen to give other officials comparable Cabinet-level status.) More HERE

Clinton promised to change the government's complexion. "My commitment is to give you an administration that looks like America," he said during the 1992 campaign. "I would be astonished if my Cabinet and my administration and my staff ... is not the most fully integrated this country has ever seen."

Over eight years and 29 appointments, Clinton had in his Cabinet five women, seven African-Americans, three Hispanics (one of them named to two posts) and one Asian-American.

Over four years and 24 appointments, Bush has named to his Cabinet five women, four African-Americans, three Hispanics and two Asian-Americans.

Before Bush, no person of color had been named to any of the four most prestigious Cabinet jobs — at the departments of State, Treasury, Defense and Justice. Now he has named two blacks as secretary of State and a Mexican-American as attorney general.

When Clinton was elected to his first four-year term in 1992, one of the first things he did was appoint Blacks to his Cabinet. Among the Black Cabinet appointees during his two terms in office were Ron Brown, U.S. Secretary of Commerce; Mike Espy, Secretary of Agriculture; Alexis Herman, Secretary of Labor; Hazel O'Leary, Secretary of Energy; Rodney Slater, Secretary of Transportation; Jesse Brown, Secretary of Veterans Affairs, who was succeeded by Togo West, and Dr. Jocelyn Elders, U.S. Surgeon General, who was succeeded by Dr. David Satcher.

Clinton also appointed nine Blacks as assistants to the president--the highest rank in the White House. Among those appointments were Ben Johnson, director of the President's Initiative for One America; Maggie Williams, the first lady's chief of staff; Alexis Herman, director of public liaison, White House, who later became labor secretary; Minyon Moore, director, political affairs; Terry Edmonds, director of speech writing; Thurgood Marshall Jr., director of Cabinet Affairs; Mark Lindsey, director of administration, and Bob Nash, director of personnel. Source

In Clinton's first term, 47% of those he appointed to the Cabinet were women or people of color. Bush had precisely the same percentage in his first term. By the end of Clinton's second term, his figure had risen to 52%. Source

Now the question is what will Barack Obama do? The Latino community may be happy with 1 slot, should we? I appreciate the reassurences from the Obama administration. Lets see if Powell, Clyburn, Rice and others gain Cabinet Posts.

Black Folks In The White House?


AAPP says: It is wonderful that the Obama Family will be in the White House in just a few more weeks. I'm still glad I voted for him. Now the question is how many blacks, women, latinos, Native Americans, openly Gay and lesbians, and other minorities will be working for our President in the White House?

In 1992, Bill Clinton famously promised to appoint a Cabinet that “looks like me America.” He followed through, tapping women and minorities for high-ranking positions and overseeing an administration more diverse than any that had come before it. More HERE

Barack Obama will nominate individuals to become Secreatary of State, Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of Defense, Attorney General, Secretary of the Interior, Secretary of Agriculture, Secretary of Commerce, Secretary of Labor, Secretary of Health and Human Services, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Secretary of Transportation, Secretary of Energy, Secretary of Education, Secretary of Veterans Affair, and Secretary of Homeland Security.

As reported by the Chicago, It looks as though Hillary Clinton has accepted an Obama cabinet post. I guess President Elect Obama Cabinet Picks will be Democratic centrist, but generally the same old faces.

Now the question still remains, will blacks and women hold significant cabinet positions in the Barack Obama White House? Will Barack Obama appoint white folks for days—but just a negro here and there. So he won't be seen as 'favoring whites' like one reporter has said?

Here are two views:

As reported by Lisa Lerer of, for women the "Early indications that men might dominate the hierarchy of Obama administration have women’s groups worried, even as a growing chorus of advisers reportedly pushes Hillary Rodham Clinton for secretary of state. “There’s definitely been a reaction to the few groups that have been named so far,” said Kim Gandy, president of the National Organization for Women. “I agree with those who are concerned that it would have been nice to see more women.” Women’s rights advocates acknowledge it’s still early in the transition process, but they say early staff picks and the lists of rumored Cabinet nominees send the wrong signal. “It’s appropriate that Obama’s vetting Clinton, but she’s one women,” said Amy Siskind, co-founder of The New Agenda, a nonpartisan women's rights group founded by former Clinton supporters. “We want to see parity in the representation of women in the Cabinet.”

Some women’s rights advocates believe the new administration is conducting a broad search across a diverse pool of candidates.

The Obama transition team asked NOW to send suggestions of qualified female candidates, according to Gandy. “The transition team is going to take the time to look at and vet the people they don’t know,” she said. “Because frankly, the people who are already well-known in Washington tend to be men and tend to be white.” The early teams released by the Obama administration have tended to be male-dominated. On Wednesday, four women and eight men were named to Obama’s transition advisory board. His agency review team is headed by seven women and thirteen men. And last week, Obama met with his key economic advisers — four women and 13 men.

So far, Obama has named four members of his top White House staff. Three are men – chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, press secretary Robert Gibbs and chief congressional liaison Phil Schiliro. And one is a woman – senior adviser Valerie Jarrett. Additionally, Vice President-elect Joe Biden has named Ron Klain as his chief of staff.

The senior staff assisting with the transition is more evenly divided, with Jarrett, a mentor and close friend one of the three top aides overseeing it. While Obama has not made any Cabinet appointments, the names that are circulating have worried some in the women’s rights community.

“I have been struck by how few women have been mentioned for high-level positions,” said former Vermont Gov. Madeleine Kunin, who worked on the Clinton transition. “It’s still very early, so I don’t want to reach conclusions yet. But the rumors are a flashing yellow light.”

AAPP: Now to the issue of blacks in an Obama Cabinet, Check out what Debra Dickerson at Mother Jones Maga has to say:

The Wall Street Journal ran a cheat sheet of the powerful blacks who may wind up in the Obama administration. But check this:

Of those hoping for access and government stints, some may be disappointed. Loyalties aside, Mr. Obama, according to people familiar with his thinking, may be constrained in the number of blacks he appoints to avoid any charges of favoring African-Americans.

So, he can appoint white folks for days—but just a Negro here and there. Why won't that be seen as 'favoring whites'?

A white reporter covering a small town, McCain-area called me post-election for comment, appalled at hearing whites in the local diner angrily fretting about being demoted to the back of the bus, the Muslim Obama giving their hard-earned money to "those who refuse to work," etc. Don't worry white folks: Situation normal. A brother may be president, but he's still got to eenie-meenie-miney-mo among us blacks, his own judgment be damned. And of course, he wouldn't be the President-elect if he didn't understand these things. But it still sucks.

Whenever blacks find themselves in a group larger than three or four at work, invariably someone will 'joke:' "Better break this up. More than four and the white folks get nervous." I guess that joke ain't going anywhere. And I bet Obama's administration will blacker than any other in history but that won't take much, will it? An under-secretary here, a deputy assistant there, and soon you've got yet another quarter-step toward full equality.

But it's all good. Obama Won. I can wait a little longer. More HERE

AAPP: I agree with Debra Dickerson, its appears that Barack Obama will appoint white folks for days —but just a Negro here and there. So he won't be seen as 'favoring whites.' that's too bad though. Come on now folks, you know unqualified whites have been favored for key post for years, why not favor the best qualified regardless of race, many whom are black?

What are your thoughts?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Congressional Black Caucus "Chumps"

Michelle Singletary has a great article in The Washington Post regarding the bailout “Bait and Switch” and how Baltimore Congressman Elijah Cumming's questioning of Neel Kashkari, the interim assistant Treasury secretary for financial stability, that had me hollering. She writes how she usually don't enjoy watching congressional hearings and how they are often packed with blustering, long-winded, self-serving speeches that are nap-inducing.

She also writes about how a recent hearing before the domestic policy subcommittee of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee was riveting. In part, it was because of remarks by Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.).

Congressman Elijah E. Cummings

The subject of the hearing was whether the Treasury Department was using bailout funds to increase foreclosure prevention, as Congress intended. It was Cummings's questioning of Neel Kashkari, the interim assistant Treasury secretary for financial stability, that had me hollering.

During the hearing, Cummings said what I've been feeling for months. In straight-from-the-'hood vernacular, Cummings captured what has been done to American taxpayers.

"Mr. Kashkari, in the neighborhood I grew up in, in the inner city of Baltimore, one of the things that you tried to do was make sure that you were not considered a chump," Cummings said. "And what 'chump' meant was that you didn't want people to see you as just somebody they could get over on."

Corporate America is playing us like chumps. Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. and the folks he's assembled to try to get us out of the economic tempest are being played like chumps. Read More HERE

AAPP: I have to agree Represenatitive Cummings, Corporate America is playing us like chumps. But, the fact of the matter is he is part of the problem, you see, he is one of the 13 black lawmakers who switched from "no" to "yes" on the bailout bill vote. The question is why a majority of the The Congressional Black Caucus supported the bail out bill from the beginning? I guess Elijah Cummings, Donna Edwards and other Congressional Black Caucus members are the biggest chumps for supporting the bill when voters were saying no!

Cross posted on African American Political

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hillary Clinton For Sec. of State? Keep Your Enemies Closer?

Tell me it's not true. No Hillary Rodham Clinton has not emerged as a top contender to be Secretary of State. I know it is said, keep your friends close but your enemies closer, but why keep a color aroused bigot so close? but here is the challenge folks, if chosen by Barack, won't Hillary just gain international experience for two or three years, create on diversion, disagree with Obama on a policy issue, resign as Secretary of State, and run against him in 2012? The PUMA group would love it. One also has to wonder why Barack obama would nominate Clinton, who voted to authorize the war in Iraq? Would she be able to send the message of change throughout America and around the world?

I guess some have forgotten the racial tensions and disgraceful bigoted campaigning caused by Hillary. I'm reminded of Doug Thompson and his blog post on the blog, Capitol Hill Blue, in April of this year, when he wrote, "Hillary Clinton won Pennsylvania because she pandered to the overt racism that exists among blue collar whites as well as the latent racism in too many others. She won because the bulk of her appeal comes from the less-educated, the less-tolerant and the less-intelligent among us. If you're a stupid, illiterate, gun-totin' white hick you probably voted for Hillary. And so did your ignorant, baby-popping, big-haired wife as well as that bleached-blond bar maid that you're seeing on the side." More HERE

Get this folks, as reported by the LA Times, she flew into Chicago to meet privately with President-elect Barack Obama, former advisors to the senator from New York said. More HERE

I wonder if Hillary was coming clean with Barack obama about her lies during the primaries about her coming under sniper fire in Bosnia?

If Obama is going to select her, he probably needs to watch the television footage showing otherwise. The fact of the matter is Hillary Clinton has no foreign policy experience. She traveled with her husband, shaking hands and smiling.

Clinton campaigns for Obama

Lisa Lerer at reports many Women's groups are worried with the early indications that men might dominate the hierarchy of Obama administration. There is a growing chorus, as reported by Politico, who are pushing for Hillary Rodham Clinton for Secretary of State post.

“There’s definitely been a reaction to the few groups that have been named so far,” said Kim Gandy, president of the National Organization for Women. “I agree with those who are concerned that it would have been nice to see more women.”

Politico also notes that women’s rights advocates acknowledge it’s still early in the transition process, but they say early staff picks and the lists of rumored Cabinet nominees send the wrong signal.

“It’s appropriate that Obama’s vetting Clinton, but she’s one women,” said Amy Siskind, co-founder of The New Agenda, a nonpartisan women's rights group founded by former Clinton supporters. “We want to see parity in the representation of women in the Cabinet.”

AAPP: Speaking of growing Chorus line, get this folks, after Hillary and Bill Clinton's massive color aroused campaigning, now Francis L. Holland, who was a former early supporter of Hillary Clinton, turned Barack Obama supporter, is now supporting Hillary Clinton for Secretary of State. Holland, who first wrote that he agreed with Latino leaders that Bill Richardson would make an "excellent pick," now says, Sen. Clinton would make a "good" leader in that position.

Hmm... Read More HERE

Sunday, November 2, 2008

60 Influential Black Political and Social Action Bloggers

African American Political Pundit 's list of 60 Influential Black Political and Social Action Bloggers. I'm providing this list for those who would like to read what black Americans have to say about the upcoming Presidential elections. Although the list is numbered it is only numbered to help me count to 60.

Note: There are a number of bloggers included in this list who don't blog only about political issues. I didn't include black church organizations or local NAACP chapters.

  1. Oliver
  2. Jack and Jill
  3. Pams House
  5. Electronic Village
  6. All About Race
  7. What About Our Daughters
  8. Dallas South Blog
  9. Booker Rising
  10. African American Political Pundit
  11. Francis L. Holland Blog
  12. Anderson At Large
  13. BlackProf
  14. Afro-Netizen
  15. Black Agenda Report
  16. Prometheus 6
  17. Black Women In Europe
  18. Eddie Griffin, BASG
  19. Dallas Progress
  21. Skeptical Brotha
  22. The SuperSpade
  23. Slant Truth
  24. Black
  25. African American Political Opinion
More of the list HERE at African American Political