Why Did the Black Vote Decline During the 2016 Presidential Elections

Document Type:Research Paper

Subject Area:Politics

Document 1

In the 2016 general elections, Hillary Clinton was tipped to win the presidential election but her an unanticipated defeat did not only shock Americans but also the international world. However, there have been a series of controversies surrounding the outcome of the November 8th elections, some linking the Russian government involvement in favor of the current president Donald Trump (Nance 2016). It is also believed that the poor African-American voter turnout could be the reason behind Clinton’s costly defeat. Opinion polls prior to the 2016 general elections showed Clinton’s popularity in majority of the state’s greater than Trump’s. Despite Hillary Clinton gaining most of the black votes, there was still a noticeable decline amongst black voters that voted the 2016 presidential elections versus the 2012 Presidential elections.

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During his (Obama) re-election in 2012, the black voter turnout slightly dropped but that did not prevent him from clinching the win to run the country’s affairs for another term. In 2016, the number drastically sunk to a low of 59. 4 leading to Clinton’s terrible defeat to a political novice. The supremacy battle between the two American popular parties; the democratic party and the Republican party has been deemed as for a long time as a battle between the whites and the African-Americans. During the period of president Lincoln, all the blacks were affiliated to the republican party due to its policies that advocated equality in America. Republicans were the first who advocated for black people to have political rights. The first Republican President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863.

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In 1867 congress passed a law that required all previous Confederate states to add black male suffrage into their state constitution. Then in 1866 after Lincoln assignation Republican radicals helped to establish Freedman’s Bureau and passed the Civil Rights Act of 1866. African-Americans mostly voted Republican after these events. Republicans hoped that African- American voters would vote Republican, increasing their chances of regaining their political dominance over Southern Democrats. (Jim Crow Laws Late 19th Century Early 20th Century) The end of the Reconstruction period marked a new dawn for the African-Americans. The Jim Crow laws 1877-1954 marked the beginning stages of voter suppression; this would be the turning point for African-Americans voting Republican to Democrats. After a dispute broke out over electoral votes.

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Republicans made a deal with Southern Democrats, that if they would support Republican candidate Rutherford B. The democratic party had the interests of the people (both blacks and whites) at heart and it also championed for the civil rights. Truman’s 1948 victory was never anticipated. But the land slide win was an indication that people wanted reforms. The democratic party had promised the people an improved economy, equal access of resources, employment and civil rights. The republican party failed to win majority of the people’s votes because it never had the interests of the people at heart. War on Voting (21st Century) 2001 to present The black vote in 2018 is almost 100% democratic. However, the black vote is declining. Many black voters are not as enthused with candidates like before in 19th and 20th century.

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