Donald Trump is known for popping up where he’s least expected, such as in bids for the presidency, but currently Maryland voters who lean Democrat may be shocked to find Trump in their mailboxes. In a last-minute effort to get out the black vote, according to Friday’s Washington Times (WT) expose, the billionaire’s image was tucked into a trove of campaign material sent out as mailers and flyers.
Among powerful images of lynchings, “fear-mongering” of the return of Jim Crow laws and hyped accounts of recent racial unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, there was Donald Trump. The pamphlet photo shows Donald Trump backed by a billboard asking: “Where’s the birth certificate?”
The campaign material is attributed to Maryland Democratic Party on behalf of Democratic Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown who is competing for governor against Republican Larry Hogan. A local Baltimore, Maryland television station covered the campaign and included a quote from Brown about the controversial ads: “It really reminds voters that over the course of this country’s history, men and women of different race, and nationalities and ethnicity have come together to enlarge the vote to make sure more Americans have unlimited, unfettered access to the ballot.”
According to the Washington Times, they asked just about everyone but Trump for an opinion about the campaign material which was labeled as “race-bait.” The Washington headquarters for the the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) had no response.
Bob Ross, president of the NAACP branch in Prince George’s County, Maryland, right there where the bulk of the material is flowing, claimed he had not see any of it. “I have three Facebook pages and Twitter and I haven’t seen that yet,” Ross said, adding, ““I can’t control the Democratic Party. They shouldn’t do that.”
Is this photo of Donald Trump a good or bad choice to “get out the black vote”?
Donald Trump was proud of this photo back when he was openly demanding President’s Obama’s birth certificate in 2012. Trump took credit when President Obama produced a birth certificate after Trump made this announcement: “I have a deal for the president. If Barack Obama opens up and gives his college records and applications, and passport application and records, I will give to a charity of his choice, a check immediately for $5 million.”
No one has asked him how he feels about the photo dropped into Democrats mailboxes to “get out the black vote.” Did Trump’s campaign to “get Obama” backfire on him?
Should an image of a sign pointing the way to a “Colored Room” be included in campaign packets in 2014 Maryland elections?
One of the questions this image immediately provoked was: Is this a deliberate attempt to ignite racial divisions in Maryland?
Another question immediately follows: Will this image produce the spark Democrats needed to win in Maryland, and if so, what does it say about race in America?
Is this photo an example of a civil-rights era that is best forgotten, or best remembered?
Dropped into mailboxes of Democrats, this historic image of the Civil Rights Movement was captioned: “It’s our turn. They’ve placed road blocks in our path at every turn and history is watching to see if we vote.”
As shameful and shocking as the photo is, what does it say for American politicians who justify using it as campaign material? Some call it “race-baiting”; others say it’s a grim reminder of what could happen again.
Do new voter ID laws justify using this image to “get out the black vote”?
In Texas, the official voting information includes: “Any voter who does not present a voter registration certificate when checking in at the polling place, along with first-time voters who did not give an identification number or ID when registering to vote, must show ID.”
Democrats point to such new voter ID laws as reason enough to remind black voters how hard they had to fight to be able to vote and how voter discrimination may be on its way back.