Romney to Address NAACP Convention

The speech won't likely help the Republican nominee siphon Black voters from Obama.

Posted: 06/20/2012 10:45 AM EDT
Mitt Romney

Every four years, most presidential candidates undergo a rite of passage with the African-American community: delivering an address at the NAACP convention. Republican nominee Mitt Romney has accepted an invitation to speak at the nation's largest civil rights organization's 103rd convention on July 11.

"This election will be about how to provide the best future for all Americans, of every color and background," NAACP president Ben Jealous said in a statement. "As America grows more diverse, we can choose to embrace that diversity or let it divide us. We look forward to an engaging conversation with Gov. Romney about his vision for a more just society."

Given the divide between Romney and the NAACP on a variety of issues, it's unlikely the speech will win over many Black voters. It could, however, help him with white, college-educated voters by appearing to be tolerant and open to diversity.

In 2008, both Obama and opponent Sen. John McCain addressed the group. The president has not yet responded to an invitation to speak at this year's conference.


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(Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

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