• Arkansas Both a Red State and a White State

    Barack Obama lost Arkansas by twenty percentage points, but he shouldn't take it too personally. Fact of the matter is: The state does not elect black people to higher office.

    And by "does not elect black people" I mean never, ever, ever in its entire history has it ever elected a black person to a single statewide office…

    Arkansas remains the only state from the former Confederacy never to elect an African-American to Congress or any statewide office — and last week it soundly rejected the man set to become the nation's first black president.

    Barack Obama lost by 20 percentage points, even though fellow Democrats control all of Arkansas' statewide offices, both chambers of the Legislature and three of its four congressional districts.

    The silver lining is that if you're a white politician in Arkansas, the standards are incredibly low. You could be a chair-breaking, burger-devouring monster like Mike Huckabee. You could be a convicted felon like Jim Guy Tucker. You could even have a standoff with the National Guard and shut down the public high schools to keep minorities out, like Orval Faubus.

    But by all means, do not be African American. Because whether you're running for governor or sewage commissioner, history says you're out of luck in a place that has never seen a black person win a statewide election.

    And since I know you're wondering… No, Bill Clinton does not count.


    Tags: Arkansas, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Mike Huckabee

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