Favorability Ratings Among top Black Newsmakers

18 11 2007

Among top African American news makers 50 Cent, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and Secretary of State Condi Rice rounded out the top three poorest influences within the African American community, according to a recent Pew Poll of black respondents.

What does it mean when two of the nation’s best known black Republicans are shunned by so many black folk?

I am not exactly sure, but GOPers can at least take some solace in knowing that former Secretary of State Colin Powell came in fifth place for positive favorability ratings.

Oprah Winfrey, Bill Cosby, and Bishop T.D. Jakes were rated as the most positive influences.

Interestingly enough, Presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama came in fourth among the more positive African American news makers. Its hard to say whether or not this is due to Obama needing to introduce himself to more African American voters or if they are just skeptical about him period.

One thing is for sure blacks remain doubtful that Obama can garner enough support among whites to wage a successful presidential bid. Whites, on the other hand, are far more optimistic in believing race will not be a factor in how they assess his candidacy.

One black political figure, Barack Obama, enjoys broad favorability in the black community, as he does among Americans generally — but by and large, that opinion is not strongly held. Among blacks able to rate him, 89% view him at least somewhat favorably. But fewer than half (42%) say their opinion is very favorable and only half see Obama strongly sharing black community values and interests. Also, blacks are more likely than whites to say that Obama’s race would hurt him with voters in the general election were he to become Democratic nominee for president next year.

Michele Obama is probably out there wondering when black America is going to “wake up and get it.” In fact, I think I can hear her right now telling people “what we’re dealing with in the black community is just the natural fear of possibility.”

And for some reason, former supermodel Tyra Banks somehow made it to the middle of the pack of the top 14 African American news getters, edging out both Tiger Woods and Jesse Jackson. Apparently, staring in reality TV show about modeling and fashion can do wonders for your favorability.

On a more serious note, its sad to know that only three black women were on this list.

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