ABCNews: Blacks’ Political Engagement Spikes, Though Racial Divisions Remain Deep

ABCNews (9/23/08)

Blacks’ Political Engagement Spikes, Though Racial Divisions Remain Deep

Barack Obama’s candidacy for president both underscores sharp racial divides in this country and offers avenues for progress: Political engagement by blacks is up sharply, Americans across racial lines think the 2008 campaign will change blacks’ self-image for the better and most see Obama’s nomination as a sign of broader racial progress.

Click here for a PDF with charts and full questionnaire.

Blacks split evenly, 45-46 percent, on whether they think of themselves first as blacks or as Americans (with black identity higher among blacks who’ve experienced discrimination). Hispanics divide similarly on the question – 42 percent think of themselves as Hispanics first, 50 percent as Americans. Whites are different: Ninety-one percent see themselves first as Americans, while just 4 percent profess greater racial than national identity.

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