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A Place For Conservative White Democrats?

December 29, 2010

In the AP article yesterday, Rep. Bobby Shows- who had just switched parties- was quoted as saying that he believes there is not a place for white conservatives in the Democratic Party, adding that he’s “here to be a white conservative Republican.”

To put it bluntly, that sounded odd and like a bad choice of words considering we are just a week out from The Weekly Standard article where Haley Barbour made comments about race and integration that he needed to clarify.

I said earlier that those comments by Shows may not be politically correct, but they are politically accurate. The group who calls themselves rural, white Democrats is down to there lowest number ever- just 34 members- and smaller than the two other main coalitions in the House (the Black Caucus and the GOP). Notice we’re using white and black to identify a good bit here.

But a story in the Laurel Leader-Call on Shows’ switch paints a different picture on what the new Republican said. According to this article, House Majority Leader Tyrone Ellis (D-Starkville), who also happens to be black, said that “it looked like there wasn’t a place for a conservative white person in the Democratic Party” following the November midterms when Gene Taylor and Travis Childers lost.

** Also on the switch, Shows said that Democratic leaders made it known that they were not happy with some of the more conservative members. “Two years ago, the leadership of the State Democratic Party notified about six to eight of us that we did not vote on the Democratic line. We didn’t vote liberal enough for the Democratic Party, and they didn’t consider us a part of the party,” Shows said.

Shows indicated that he was worried about certification from the Democratic Party and he did not want to go through that process “so the best thing for me to do was join the Republican Party and keep my conservative values.”

3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 29, 2010 8:29 pm

    Ellis is denying that he made that statement: http://www.wapt.com/r/26314378/detail.html

  2. rubradog permalink
    December 29, 2010 9:18 pm

    In the 2007 campaign some Democratic activists accused several people running as Democrats of basically heresy and filed a complaint with the Democrat Executive Committee requesting them to not certify them as candidates. I remember hearing of at least four of them. There may have been more. The names I remember were Rep. Deryk Parker, Rep. Jeff Smith, Rep. Sid Bondurant, and candidate Brandon Presley. According to my sources, Parker sent them a letter telling them to buzz off, Smith called Jamie Franks and Franks got his name removed, Bondurant had been accused of hostility to unions and immigrants but when he showed up with his immigrant wife (who is a naturalized citizen now) the panel dismissed his case, and Presley defended himself saying he was backed by Jim Hood leading to his case being dismissed. Presley has since “proven” his Democrat bona fides. Bondurant changed to the Republicans. Parker is still a Democrat. Smith hinted on the Gallo show that he may run next as an independent. Sounds like Shows saw the handwriting on the wall. I wonder how many others will see it.

  3. Jason Pollan permalink
    December 30, 2010 10:16 pm

    What a joke. Shows now wants to claim the party is too liberal for him? 2010? He can be in whatever party he likes. he can be conservative or not, but at this point it’s like being 65 years old and switching from ole miss to state because you just figured out you don’t like the colors blue and red together. Now, as for the ‘political correctness’…it’s more like political lame-ness. was he afraid people would think he’s black? that he likes black people? that he looks at race when he votes? that it’s a ‘values’ issue? nah. no good way to slice dung like that. there’s meaning behind it. just not a good one.

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