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My blog below on the 1984 Senate race prompted a TAPster to note that the Martin Luther King holiday was a big issue that year.
Jim Hunt led Jesse Helms in early polls, but Helms turned the race around in late 1983 when he filibustered on the Senate floor against a national holiday honoring King.  He followed the filibuster with a notable TV ad: “I oppose the Martin Luther King holiday. Where do you stand, Jim?”
There were a lot of factors in that race, including Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale at the tops of the tickets. But, after the November election, Harrison Hickman did a poll to help us understand what happened. He found that the single issue that best predicted how a person voted in the Senate race – with almost a 100 percent correlation – was how they felt about the King holiday.
Few if any of us in Hunt’s campaign would have believed that, 30 years later, America would have an African-American President. And none of us would have been surprised to know that race is still a powerful force in politics.
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# dap916
Monday, January 20, 2014 4:32 PM
I wish I could get inside your head, Gary, and see if I am right that secretly, you think Barack Obama is absolutely NOT what our first black president should have been. I'm like you, though. 30 years ago I would have called someone totally nuts if they would have told me that we'd have a black president anytime in the next 30 or more years. I sure wish it wouldn't have been Barack Obama, though. This man is totally wrong for our country. Just totally wrong. I'm not saying that because I'm a republican. I'm saying that because I follow politics and such very closely and I'm fairly intelligent. If I was a registered democrat, I'd be like Kay Hagan and would deny being associated with Obama in any way.

Now, with regard to your statement that you would have been surprised to know that race is still a powerful force in politics. Gary, race is a powerful force in politics almost TOTALLY because of the democrats. Republicans don't bring up race. Republicans don't do things purposely just to hurt know that, I'm sure of it. Using the "race card" helps your party in a HUGE way. Blacks are as bad off today (and in some cases even unemployment and poverty) as ever. Democrats have promised and promised and promised and every time the blacks make an issue out of why they're still impoverished and have such high unemployment and incarceration levels etc....."it's because of the republicans" is the democrat's response. Well, so far that's worked because 90% + blacks vote democratic. The ones that don't and the ones that go public pointing out what I've just said here are called "Uncle Toms" and are shunned by the black community and so forth. So, these so-called race problems democrats constantly say are here in our country are a result of what democrats are doing and saying. It's in their best interests for blacks to believe republicans are racists and for blacks to continue to be impoverished and have a high rate of unemployment and be on the public entitlement system. That's a HUGE voting block. They're doing the same with Mexicans now also. And, that too is working. It's a great strategy but it's hurting the minority communities in a very big way.
# Choo
Monday, January 20, 2014 11:23 PM
If Martin Luther King's dream ever actually happens, there will be a lot of lost Democrats. What will they campaign on? What will the race pimps rail about? How will the left use race as a wedge issue. Hopefully for the Democrats they will be able to keep race and their race baiters working and employed by the Democrat Party. If the Dream ever comes about, it's over for the Democrat Party. Judge by the content of character not by color of skin. Oops too late for that. Afirmative action lives on.

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