US Senate expected to remain without black members for years

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U.S. Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (C) speaks to members of the media as Senate Minority Whip Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) (R) and Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) (L) listen at the U.S. Capitol September 19, 2012 in Washington, DC. Senate Republicans had a weekly policy committee luncheon meeting earlier. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (C) speaks to members of the media as Senate Minority Whip Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) (R) and Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) (L) listen at the U.S. Capitol September 19, 2012 in Washington, DC. Senate Republicans had a weekly policy committee luncheon meeting earlier. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The Huffington Post is reporting that the United States Senate will remain without any black representative for some years to come. Of its 100 members, there are currently no black senators, and it is likely to remain so after the 2012 Congressional elections since there are no black major Senate candidates. There have only been six black senators in the country’s history:

“I frankly think it’s a shame, and I think it is reflective of America sometimes still idling in the past,” said Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), who is black. “There are enormously talented people in all backgrounds.”

While all the lawmakers interviewed for this piece acknowledged that the Senate would be better equipped to serve the American public if it were more diverse, the issue was hardly at the top of the agenda for many of them.

“That is the last thing on my mind right now,” said Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), when asked about the topic on Capitol Hill. “Obviously we should have more diversity. … But how you go about that, frankly, I would contemplate that more in January.”

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