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RNC Has Fewest Black Delegates In 40 Years

RNC Floor / Credit: Getty Images

First Lady Laura Bush addresses the 2008 Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minn. Credit: Stan Honda, Getty Images

Filmmaker Spike Lee, while being interviewed by CNN's Soledad O'Brien at the DNC last week, challenged the cable network to compare the racial make-up of those assembled at both conventions. The Republican National Convention, Lee implied, would be largely white.

According to a report published on EURWeb, the number of black delegates at the RNC is at its lowest in decades:

In fact, the 2008 GOP event has the lowest number of African American delegates since 1968, according to a convention guide released to delegates this week by the nonpartisan research institution, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.

After seating a record number of African American delegates in 2004 (6.7 percent), blacks comprise only 1.5 percent of the total number of GOP delegates this year, according to the Joint Center, which focuses on minority issues. The 36 black delegates in 2008 represent a 78.4 percent decline from the 167 black delegates at the 2004 GOP convention.

According to the Hudson Valley Press, the Joint Center's guide recognized McCain's efforts to reach black voters, but concluded: "John McCain is very likely to receive a historically low share of the black vote."

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