Sen. Elbert Guillory’s party switch to the GOP continues to have a rolling effect on the dynamics of race and politics in Louisiana and beyond.
Several developments have surfaced. First, yesterday Guillory’s video about his party switch got a mention on the Rush Limbaugh show, with the host calling his statements “historic”…
Now, Louisiana State Senator Elbert Guillory has released a video message to his constituents about why he switched parties from Democrat to Republican. Now, the fact that there have been Democrats switch parties is not new. The fact there have been black Democrats switch parties is not new. But State Senator Elbert Guillory does it in an historical way and says things that you don’t hear ever, from anyone from the civil rights coalition. We have three sound bites from this. The whole thing, if you look at this in the right frame of mind, could be a tear-jerker.
The reason I want you to hear this and the reason I think it’s important is in the current climate, this just isn’t the kind of thing that a Democrat, even a former Democrat, says. So I think the fact that people like State Senator Elbert Guillory from Louisiana are there and willing to speak at a time like this is hopeful. That’s why I’m giving a wide audience to his comments.
Hear audio of the Limbaugh segment here.
Guillory then went on the Sean Hannity show last night…
Then today there was more – and in particular, fallout over the rather questionable response to Guillory’s “Why I Am A Republican” video from the Young Democrats of Louisiana. From a press release put out by the Greater New Orleans Republicans this afternoon on the continuing debate following Guillory’s party switch to the GOP…
For the second time in less than a month, Louisiana Democratic party leadership has voiced divisive, intemperate, and malicious remarks.
In this rambling, Young Democrat response to Sen. Elbert Guillory’s switch to the Republican Party,1 Ricardo Malbrew argues that food stamps, Section 8 housing, and, to use Mr. Malbrew’s words, other “you know like, social entitlements” are necessary for blacks to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. This suggestion is offensive and speaks to the very mentality that drove Sen. Guillory from the Democrat Party in the first place. In explaining his switch, Sen. Guillory stated:
You see, at the heart of liberalism is the idea that only a great and powerful big government can be the benefactor of social justice for all Americans. But the left is only concerned with one thing — control. And they disguise this control as charity. Programs such as welfare, food stamps… these programs aren’t designed to lift black Americans out of poverty, they were always intended as a mechanism for politicians to control…the black community.
Sen. Guillory continued, “[t]he idea that blacks, or anyone for that matter, need the government to get ahead in life is despicable.”
Ideas championed by the Republican Party, including smaller government, and the freedom to plot one’s course free of government dependence and government control, are ideas that everyone can get behind, regardless of their race or gender.
The Greater New Orleans Republicans condemn Malbrew’s writing as divisive, misguided, and counter-productive. As Malbrew is the “Historian of the Young Democrats of Louisiana”, the Greater New Orleans Republicans can only assume that this is also the official position of the Louisiana Democratic Party. GNOR calls on the Louisiana Democratic Party to distance themselves from these remarks.
The Greater New Orleans Republicans have a proud history of supporting qualified candidates for office regardless of race. It has frequently supported African American candidates and spearheaded an African American outreach campaign in 2004 that was a precursor to the recent successful @large outreach event. GNOR will continue to work with all citizens dedicated to good government in an effort to better our city, state and nation.
Guillory also did an interview with the Daily Caller about his party switch…
After Louisiana Democratic Party Chairwoman Karen Carter Peterson’s assertion that opponents to Obamacare are motivated by “the race of this African-American president,” Guillory had to answer to a constituency every politician worries about — his own mother.
“‘Elbert, are you a part of this? Do you buy into this? Do you believe this?’” Guillory, in an interview with The Daily Caller, recalled his 103-year-old, life-long Democratic mother asking shortly after Peterson’s comments erupted in the press.
“I knew from that conversation on — I was ready to make the decision [to switch parties], I’d been considering it for awhile, but that tipped me over the edge right there,” he explained.
And finally, if we can find the video of the Guillory switch being discussed on The Five this afternoon we’ll update with it – because Bob Beckel’s reaction to the Senator’s statements is a cross between an acid trip and the old Baghdad Bob press conferences.