Gwen Ifill Sees No 'Breakthrough' Republican Candidates


Last night, the Center for American Progress hosted a discussion between PBS’s Gwen Ifill and CAP President John Podesta about Ifill’s new book, “The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama.” After the event, Ifill sat down for an interview with ThinkProgress, where we asked her about the Republican party’s efforts to reach out to African-American voters.

During her talk with Podesta, Ifill said that she didn’t believe that RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s race was the motivating factor behind why Republicans elected him. In the interview, Ifill said that “they weren’t so caught up with the idea of Barack Obama being black that they were going to sacrifice their need to come back just to elect a black guy.”

“They needed someone that could articulate what the Republican brand still is,” said Ifill. “And he did that better than the other guys running for office.” Asked if she saw any “breakthrough” candidates in the Republican party, Ifill responded bluntly, “not yet”:

IFILL: In fact, we seem to have gone backwards. I mean, we used to have J.C. Watts in the House, but now there are no black Republicans in Congress. At all. That’s a step back. In order to change that direction, there has to be recruiting going on. I think there is recruiting going on at some lower levels, but they’ve got some ground to make up.

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ }}
@2022 - AlterNet Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. - "Poynter" fonts provided by