As the Black Lives Matter movement becomes an influential political force in the wake of George Floyd’s death, some now wonder if his supporters, frustrated by a bipartisan system that refuses to heed his calls, could ultimately organize his own political party. in the U.S.
Four years ago, 43 percent of American adults supported Black Lives Matter, according to the Pew Research Center. Today, two-thirds of American adults say they support the movement, and 38 percent say they strongly support it.
While Democrats have tried to incorporate the movement into their party, some activists have been reluctant to do so: Alleged Democratic candidate Joe Biden, for example, recently sparked outrage by telling radio host Charlamagne that God “you are not black” whether to decide again whether to vote for him or for President Trump. His comments renewed the cries of African Americans that the Democratic Party takes their vote for granted.
“That someone could be so presumptuous, that you have to vote for a Democrat or else you are not identified as black, that’s the main reason we need an independent black party to change that kind of behavior,” Robert Johnson , the founder of BET, said in a recent interview.
So could Black Lives Matter mobilize in his own political party?
Who defends it?
Johnson, the first black billionaire in the U.S., said in an interview with Fox News that he sees the need for a group to rise up for the sole purpose of fighting for African-Americans because he said the Democratic Party has failed to comply with the Redress The systemic wealth gap between black and white Americans.
“No minority group has achieved significant power in a bipartisan system when they are locked in on one side and the other side considers them unreachable,” Johnson said.
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Johnson said that the permanent interests of African Americans have diverged in many ways with the Democratic Party; Now, with the nation behind the Black Lives Matter movement and racial injustice at the forefront, it is time to act.
“I propose that an independent Black Lives Matter party should echo the founding principles of the original members of the Black Caucus Congress in 1971 that … they said black Americans should have no permanent friends, no permanent enemies, only interests permanent, “Johnson said. .
Johnson suggested Black Lives Matter run candidates for various offices and harness his power in battlefield states like Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, where black voters who stay home or break with Democrats can determine the outcome of the presidential election. . He recently publicized this idea in an open letter to the BLM movement.
Meanwhile, Fox News’ Tucker Carlson has argued that the movement has already become a political party, “perhaps the strongest political party in the United States,” after Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey faced jeers and threats to defeat him in the next elections when he said: “I do not support the total abolition of the police department.”
How would it work?
Being added to the ballot differs by state, but generally requires obtaining signatures on a petition. In New York State, for example, the group would need to have 15,000 voters spread across the state to sign a petition to have one or more candidates added to the ballot. Distribution requirements say that more than 100 voters must sign at least 15 congressional districts.
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If a party gets 50,000 votes in a governor’s election, it can host an official convention and win a ballot space for four years, and can present candidates without having to get signatures each time.
Johnson says that a Black Lives Matter party could be used as an influence to influence the two main games.
“I have long been convinced that 40 million African Americans who tend to vote en bloc in one of the two parties limit their influence to get action from both parties,” Johnson told CNBC.
“If African-American interests had been embraced by one or two of the dominant parties, we would not have the tremendous social, economic, and racial problems that we have now,” Johnson said.
It is probable?
It is still too early to know. Black Lives Matter leaders have not publicly responded to Johnson’s calls, and Fox News was unable to contact the leaders for comment.
“The two-party system in the United States is deeply ingrained and the suggestions for a viable new party are unrealistic,” David Hopkins, a professor of political science at Boston College who specializes in American politics, told Fox News. “There is already a party that favors the Black Lives Matter movement, and it is the Democratic Party.”
In 2015, the Democratic National Committee unanimously adopted a resolution in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. But members of the movement quickly rejected all political affiliations.
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“Now, we have neither endorsed nor affiliated with the Democratic Party, or any other party,” the Black Lives Matter network said in a response posted on its Facebook page. “The Democratic Party, like the Republican and all political parties, has historically attempted to control or contain the efforts of blacks to liberate us. Real change requires a real fight, and that fight will be on the streets and led by the people, not by a political party. “