A new study signals that black voter turnout is up, but analysts say that Democrats can't assume the trend will last beyond the 'Obama effect.' Moreover, Republicans are reaching out to minorities.
High black voter turnout, plus a lower turnout from white voters, gave President Obama the edge in swing states and a victory in 2012, signaling the importance of minority voters going forward.
Though his campaign caught fire for a time, many black voters did not embrace Herman Cain because he rejects institutional racism as a major issue. But his candidacy has exposed rifts in the black community.
Herman Cain surged to the top of the GOP presidential field in one poll on Thursday, buttressed by strong tea party support. Tea party backers say that shows the movement isn't racist.
The US Department of Agriculture, from which Shirley Sherrod was fired for appearing to discriminate, stood at the forefront of institutional racism for decades. The question of whether America has righted historical wrongs against blacks ignites today's heated race debate.
The Obama administration hastily forced the resignation of a black Agriculture Department official, Shirley Sherrod, who was accused of racism. Shirley Sherrod was later exonerated. It's the second time in two summers that President Obama has become mired in a matter of race.
Internecine fighting and the passing of icons like Dorothy Height and Benjamin Hooks indicate a civil rights movement unmoored from its past. Its search for relevance is coming to a head.