The Next Generation Needs Republicans of Color

Why it is important to be a Republican of Color for the next generation.

One reason involves strategy. “Never put all of your eggs into one basket.” We’re familiar with the scenario; the basket drops and we take the risk that all of the eggs lay broken in the carrier. Despite the adage and the potential for great loss, it has not inspired enough people of color to minimize risk and step outside of the Democratic tent.  Instead of encouraging candidates to run for both parties to advocate issues important to our community, millions of minorities fail to hedge their bets. It’s imperative that we think broader than blue or red, and adopt blue and red as a strategy.

Now, I’m ready to acknowledge the elephant in the room. Donald Trump is president, and the GOP is struggling to find its identity. One may suggest that we are witnessing the beginning of a political civil war; which brings me to my second reason. If any group has been able to effect change in the U.S., it has been people of color. I won’t rehash the abolishment of slavery and the impact of the Civil Rights Movement.  We know that nothing is impossible. The point is that the intra-party conflict has made the time ripe, and we can reestablish the GOP as the party of Lincoln. Am I opportunistic? You’re damn right!

Our allegiance shouldn’t be to a party, but a commitment to our families and communities. Narrowing our options to one political party hinders our chances to obtain economic and social growth.  Without a doubt, change and providing ourselves with viable options will not be easy. However, Fredrick Douglass said it best, “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.”

Jillean Long Battle served as Asst. Deputy Treasurer to the 46th State Treasurer of Missouri. Before serving that role, Battle was Chief Deputy Treasurer and General Counsel to Indiana’s 55th Treasurer, Kelly Mitchell, and the Legislative Director for the Indiana Public Retirement System (INPRS).