Proud to be the Party of Lincoln
There are two African American men seeking the gubernatorial nomination of the GOP for an '06 general election. Yesterday Mr. Dotson informed me that HoFer Lynn Swann announced he'd take on the former LG and the former GOP candidate for Governor Bill Scranton (son of the GOP moderate icon from the '60s) for the nod from the PA GOP. Of course he's not the only African-American seeking statewide office in '06. Michael Steele is poised to bleed a little bit of the blue out of Maryland's Congressional Delegation when he takes Paul Sarbanes seat just over the river. And Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell has been running for Governor since November 8th 2002. Blackwell is currently leading in the polls against GOP AG Jim Petro and GOP State Auditor Betty Montgomery.
I've always been proud that our Commonwealth was the first in the union to elect an African-American to be governor, even if that guy happened to have sat on the other side of the aisle. It makes sense that this American milestone came from the Old Dominion. Will the grandson of a Pakistani immigrant ever become Prime minister? Will the French ever rally behind someone of Algerian heritage? Probably not. Will an African American, whose ancestors came to this continent on a slave ship, within our lifetimes become President of the USA? Absolutely. And when she does, I believe she'll look back to men like Ken Blackwell, Doug Wilder, and Michael Steele and realize their extraordinary lives blazed her path. I'm excited to be awake enough to see it happen.
Of course, there's no affirmative action within the GOP. Both of these men have tough races ahead of them and to get to GOP nod you have to earn it. But just because Herman Cain didn't get the nomination for the '04 Senate contest in GA doesn't mean his candidacy wasn't a step forward. Blackwell, Cain, Steele, Swann (and hopefully someday soon Mr. Paul Harris) take rather large steps for themselves towards political power, but enormous leaps for the American people as a whole.
P.S. what are the good blogs to read to get a sense of what's going on in Ohio? Who is Ohio's Chad Dotson?
Here's a Lynn Swann website, note it still talks about his run for Governor in the subjunctive. But it's official alright.