Black Members of the U.S. Senate, No Time Soon?
Lack of infrastructure to recruit African-American candidates cited as problem
Here’s an oft forgotten fact: President Barack Obama was once the only serving, and now the last elected, African American in the United States Senate. His scandalized replacement, former Sen. Roland Burris of Illinois, did not hold the spot after his appointment in 2009. Lawmakers, experts and activist say the Senate is likely to remain without an African American because it isn’t high on the establishment’s priority list. And there isn’t any infrastructure within the Democratic Party to groom and support black candidates, they say. "I frankly think it's a shame, and I think it is reflective of America sometimes still idling in the past," said Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), a very vocal member of the Congressional Black Caucus. If the Senate were representative of the U.S. population, 13 of the 100 members of the governing body would be black. There have only been six elected or appointed black senators in the country’s history. (Huffington Post)