President Trump won only 8 percent of the black vote in 2016 after pleading his case this way throughout the campaign:
“And I ask you this, I ask you this — crime, all of the problems — to the African Americans, who I employ so many, so many people, to the Hispanics, tremendous people: What the hell do you have to lose?” he asked in August 2016. “Give me a chance. I’ll straighten it out. I’ll straighten it out.”
Nearly a year after being elected, black Americans do not appear to have much confidence that Trump can straighten things out. Recent concerns about the president’s attacks on the NFL players protesting racism and his equating activists with white supremacists in Charlottesville have further fueled concerns among black Americans.
A report titled “The Lives and Voices of Black America,” from Perry Undem, a D.C.-based nonpartisan public opinion research firm, revealed a demographic concerned about their civil rights under Trump’s presidency.
The overwhelming majority — 84 percent — of African Americans fear that the country is on the wrong track since Trump entered the White House, and two-thirds feel worried, with sizable percentages feeling a host of other negative emotions. Just 12 percent said they are hopeful, happy or relieved about Trump.
There’s significant concern that Trump’s plan to “Make America Great Again” will not translate to an improved quality of life for black Americans. Those surveyed think his policies will negatively impact the black community’s access to quality public schools, job opportunities that pay a livable wage and affordable health care, child care and housing.
They also fear that Trump’s policies will have a negative impact on the ability to keep black children from mass incarceration and over-policing.
They also expressed concerns about access to drug treatment programs and feeling safe in neighborhoods.
Due to these concerns, some black Americans have even expressed concern about raising children or making plans about when to have children under the Trump administration.
Fewer than 1 in 5 think it is a good time to be a black person in America. Only 12 percent of those surveyed think it’s a good time to be a black man in America — the number is 18 percent for black women.
And when it comes to the most trusted voices on policy issues, black Americans look to a couple no longer in politics: the Obamas, with 92 percent of black Americans naming the former president and his wife among the people and organizations they are most likely to trust on issues that matter the most to them.
Sources: Eugene Scott (The Washington Post)