President Obama to Address Frustrated Congressional Black Caucus

The president gets his chance to respond to claims he has forsaken the Black community.

Posted: 09/24/2011 03:54 PM EDT
Obama to address congressional black caucus

In recent months, dismayed members of the Congressional Black Caucus have provided hotly-debated commentary questioning President Barack Obama’s performance.

 

To note a few, Rep. Maxine Waters of California has lamented at a job summit in Detroit last month that she is tired of waiting for President Obama to spring into action concerning Black unemployment and has complained Obama's Midwest bus tour had bypassed Black districts.  Caucus chairman Rep. Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri famously called Obama’s concession to Republicans a "sugar-coated Satan sandwich” during talks of raising the government borrowing limit this past summer.

 

On Saturday, Obama will have the chance to give his take when he addresses Congressional Black Caucus leaders at its annual awards dinner in Washington.

 

As the president readies words for his impending speech on Saturday and continues rallying support for his new job creation bill, The American Jobs Act, the chief concern for CBC leaders has been a disastrous Black unemployment rate across the nation, which holds at 16.7 percent. Nationally, unemployment tops out at 9.1 percent.

 

Though the CBC may have been some of Obama’s toughest critics as of late, the group has vocalized that the president is only as strong as his support system. "Nobody wants to do anything that would empower the people who hate the president," Cleaver told the Associated Press.

 

At last year’s dinner, Obama emphasized the importance that Blacks get out the vote in the midterm elections, warning that Republicans were preparing to "turn back the clock," the AP writes.

(Photo: AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

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