Ohio African Americans Cast Important Votes in Presidential Election

Article excerpt

Did African American voters help tip Ohio to President Bush's column in the 2004 election? A respected analyst thinks so.

Bush captured 16 percent of the African American vote in that swing state this year, up from just 9 percent in 2000, says Dr. David Bositis, senior research associate at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, a nonprofit that studies African American voting trends. One reason may be the Ohio ballot initiative against gay marriage, which brought more voters to the polls.

"I'd attribute it to the gay marriage initiative," Bositis told Black Issues. In October, a national poll by the center found African Americans more likely than Whites to oppose gay marriage and civil unions. In Ohio, he said, early indications show that about 60 percent of African American voters voted for the anti-gay marriage initiative. "African Americans were more likely to be against gay marriage than Whites," he says.

Ohio already was a battle-ground for campaign attorneys due to long lines at the polls, which prompted many precincts to use "provisional ballots" to help speed up the voting process. …


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