Nov 3, 2019

GOP Rep. Dan Crenshaw: Democrats take non-white voters "for granted"

Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

In an interview with Alayna Treene for "Axios on HBO," GOP Rep. Dan Crenshaw said the idea that all non-white voters should back Democrats is "racism."

The big picture: The Republican Party is overwhelmingly white, with only one black Republican in the House and one in the Senate. But Crenshaw, who represents much of northern and western Houston, says the party needs new messengers to reach non-white voters and to expand the party's electorate.

  • "I hate engaging in identity politics. I hate saying, you know, 'We need more of these people because of this immutable characteristic.' But at the same time, you know, people need different messengers for the same message, OK? People do want to hear that message from somebody who they can relate with," Crenshaw told "Axios on HBO."

Between the lines: Crenshaw himself is caught up in a mass GOP exodus in Texas, where a slew of lawmakers have opted to not run for re-election in 2020, leaving vulnerable seats up for grabs.

What they're saying:

"I just don't take it as a given that because you're non-white that we should worry about you voting Democrat. And I think Democrats do take that for granted. You know, that's where that conversation comes from, this idea that your immutable characteristic should drive how you think, which is — I think there's a word for that. I think it's called 'racism.'"
— Crenshaw to "Axios on HBO"

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Texas Republicans sound alarm on party's future

Reps. Will Hurd and Dan Crenshaw each represent segments of how the GOP has to adapt if it wants to remain dominant — become not so white, and younger. But in interviews with “Axios on HBO,” it’s clear they don’t agree on how to build the future GOP.

Why it matters: Both Texas congressmen are watching signs the GOP is losing its stronghold on the Lone Star State as they pursue different paths to remain relevant.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Nov 3, 2019

GOP Rep. Will Hurd: "There won't be a Republican Party" if it doesn't diversify

Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

In an interview with Alexi McCammond for "Axios on HBO," GOP Rep. Will Hurd warned that "there won't be a Republican Party" if it doesn't start to look more like the rest of the country.

The big picture: Hurd is the only black Republican in the House. The Senate also has only one black Republican — South Carolina's Sen. Tim Scott. The party is otherwise overwhelmingly white — a stark contrast to the Democratic Party, which has significantly diversified itself in recent years.

Go deeperArrowNov 3, 2019

Warren gains with black voters

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is narrowing Joe Biden's longtime lead with black Democrats in the crowded 2020 primary field.

Why it matters: Since 1992, no Democrat has won the party's presidential nomination without a majority of the black vote. Black voters are expected to cast one in four primary ballots in the 2020 election, per an NBC News analysis.

Go deeperArrowNov 15, 2019