OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Democrats continue to get warning signs ahead of the 2024 elections regarding a voting bloc that has been vital to their party for decades.
Politico reported Saturday that black voters continue to trend away from the Democratic Party in a foreboding sign that could spell doom next year.
“After a lot of hand-wringing in recent years, elections next month in Mississippi and Virginia — two Southern states with large Black populations — will offer one final, robust read going into 2024 on the extent of the slippage among Democrats’ most reliable bloc of voters,” Politico noted, adding: “The warning signs have been flashing.”
Black voters have long supported Democrats, and in overwhelming numbers, for decades. But President Biden’s approval rating, especially, has been declining among the voting bloc compared to white voters, contributing to a precipitous decline in his approval.
And last week, a Republican was elected governor of Louisiana — sitting Attorney General Jeff Landry — for the first time in eight years, suggesting “diminished voter enthusiasm in the areas with the largest black populations,” Politico noted.
“And just this week, a prominent Democratic data firm published a report outlining declining support for Democrats in last year’s midterm elections among younger black voters, black men and black voters without college degrees,” said Politico.
The outlet added:
There’s no one simple answer for why Democrats are losing Black support at the margins. Some conservative Black voters are aligning with the GOP as the parties become more ideologically homogenous. And inflation and other economic struggles in recent years — which have driven much of the widespread dissatisfaction with Biden — have hit communities of color harder.
What’s clear is that Biden can’t safely assume he’ll be able to reassemble the coalition that he rode to victory three years ago. Black support for Democrats has been slipping slightly for the better part of a decade, since Barack Obama, the country’s first Black president, was last on the ballot in 2012.
There are signs Republicans may have continued since 2020 to pull some Black voters away from Democrats. That is bad news for Biden.
In a Quinnipiac University poll released earlier in the week, around 65 percent of black voters said they approved of the way Biden is handling his job — and that is up from an overall average approval rating of around 39 percent.
Earlier this month, a Fox News poll found that Biden is leading former President Donald Trump among black voters by nearly three-to-one, 74 percent to 26 percent. And while that seems like a significant lead, it’s way down from 2020, when Biden captured 90 percent of black voters, according to Catalist, a Democratic data firm, which found that black support for Democrats fell during last year’s midterms.
“The steepest drops for Democrats were among Black voters in the millennial and Gen Z generations (from 91 percent in 2020 to 84 percent in 2022), Black men (87 percent to 83 percent), Black voters in rural areas (84 percent to 80 percent) and Black voters without a college degree (91 percent to 87 percent),” Politico reported.
In another ominous warning to Democrats, scores of black residents lined the streets in the outlying neighborhoods of Atlanta in August to show support for Trump as a motorcade whisked him to the Fulton County courtroom to answer charges of election interference.
Hundreds of Black Americans, many holding signs and wearing shirts signaling their support for the embattled former president, cheered as he went by, videos showed, with several residents explaining that they believe the charges against Trump are bogus and that he is being mistreated.
One commentator posted a 45-second TikTok video on the X platform showing mostly Black bystanders reacting with enthusiasm to Trump’s appearance in their neighborhood.
“What the media doesn’t want you to see. The people love Trump,” said the post containing the video.
What the media doesn’t want you to see. The people love Trump pic.twitter.com/h2vfdJb1rM
— 🇺🇸Travis🇺🇸 (@Travis_in_Flint) August 25, 2023