29 Pages

Political Choices: A Realignment in Partisanship Among Black Voters?

WithDianne M. Pinderhughes

This chapter discusses the concepts of partisan identification and electoral alignments and black political alignments and spin off scenarios with likely results in public policy. Black voters are Democrats, among the strongest partisan identifiers as a group in contemporary American politics. There are several internal factors which might generate shifts in partisan alliances among blacks; whether they result in long term realignment will depend on the Democratic Party’s response to these conflicts, and how individual black voters react to the party’s answers. Realignment which involves shifts to a black party will move small rather than large portions of the black electorate as it has in the past. The interesting question which is also one of vital importance for black voters is whether their mobilization produced a national realignment in reaction to the creation of a southern black electorate and to the development of a policy agenda of interest to blacks throughout the nation by the Democratic Party.