Obama Nominee Once Said Most 'White Voters' Won't Vote for Black Candidate

Image: Obama Nominee Once Said Most 'White Voters' Won't Vote for Black Candidate President Barack Obama announces Rep. Mel Watt, D-N.C., as his nominee for the Federal Housing Finance Authority (FHFA) Director on May 1.

Wednesday, 01 May 2013 10:06 PM

By Greg Richter

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President Barack Obama's nominee for the Federal Housing Finance Agency once said most white people would not vote for a black candidate, and that those who won’t "need to be factored out of the equation."

Rep. Mel Watt, D-N.C., made the remarks during an October 2005 hearing on extending the Voting Rights Act, according to The Daily Caller.

“There would be a substantial majority of white voters who would say that under no circumstances would they vote for an African-American candidate,” said Watt, who was head of the Congressional Black Caucus at the time.

Watt told Cybercast News Service at the time that his remarks were based on a poll of North Carolinians in the 1980s that said 30 percent of them would not vote for a black candidate under any circumstances.

Watt told the National Commission on the Voting Rights Act that a poll at that time would show "a substantial majority of white voters who would say that under no circumstances would they vote for an African-American candidate." He later changed his words to say that "some of them would," CNS reported at the time.

Watt admitted that the number of white Americans who would consider voting for a black candidate was decreasing, but said that the act should adjust districts to take what he believed to be racially motivated voting into account.

He said voters who would not consider voting for minority candidates "need to be factored out of the equation" because "I've got no use for them in the democratic process."




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