A speaker at this week's conservative Faith And Freedom Coalition Conference said on Friday that the Republican Party struggles to attract minority voters because they're "being paid by the government" in benefits. According to Think Progress, Rich Thompson, founder of the "school choice" advocacy group "100 Dads" made the remarks during a panel about the Republican Party's attempts to draw in new coalitions of nonwhite voters.
"Right now an extremely disproportionate number of people of color are being paid by the government. Therein lies a serious problem," said Thompson at the conference's panel entitled "The True Rainbow Coalition: Building an Organization in Minority Faith Communities."
"We can’t just cut everybody off instantaneously," he continued. "But we have to have a serious conversation about how we get people to being 'producers' and not 'receivers.' So I thank you for coming this evening to find out how we can better message to people of the black community, the Latino community, and the Asian community."
In fact, the New York Times reported that of U.S. citizens on food stamps were three times more likely to be white than black in 2012. Of the 36 million people on food stamps, 24 million were white. 8 million were black and 6 million were hispanic or another race. Nevertheless, Republicans have long used the specter of black welfare cheats to frighten other whites into cutting social programs.
Republican National Committee chairperson Reince Priebus ordered a post-mortem on the 2012 election, trying to account for how the Republican Party got beaten so badly in so many elections. Among its findings were that young people and minorities voted overwhelmingly Democratic in both 2012 and 2008, prompting a push among Republicans to reach out to these traditionally Democratic constituencies. The efforts have provided mixed results.
Watch video of Thompson's remarks, embedded below via Think Progress:
[image of Rich Thompson via 100 Dads official Facebook photostream]