New study shows Black voters are concerned with nation’s economy

“Our communities are increasingly dissatisfied with how economic issues are being addressed at the state level and at the federal level,” said Alicia Garza, CEO of Black to the Future Action Fund.

The Black to the Futures Action Fund released on Thursday the findings of its year-long temperature check poll, which shows that Black America is most concerned with the state of the U.S. economy.

Activist and study organizer Alicia Garza, of the Black to the Future Action Fund, told theGrio, “The number one issue for Black people in America is economics.” 

Black Lives Matter Co-Founder Alicia Garza speaks during the Women’s March “Power to the Polls” voter registration tour launch at Sam Boyd Stadium on January 21, 2018, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Demonstrators across the nation gathered over the weekend, one year after the historic Women’s March on Washington, D.C., to protest President Donald Trump’s administration and to raise awareness for women’s issues. (Photo by Sam Morris/Getty Images)

“Our communities are increasingly dissatisfied with how economic issues are being addressed at the state level and at the federal level,” said the co-founder of Black Lives Matter.

She added that out of 6,000 Black Americans that were surveyed, it was made clear that Black voters, “have the same concerns and are increasingly dissatisfied with whether or not those concerns are being addressed or how those issues are being left to the wayside.”

The Temp check polls are considered to be the largest recurring survey of approximately 6,000 Black adults in the United States, conducted bimonthly from July 2021 to May 2022.

Garza told theGrio that the goal of the study is to provide the Biden-Harris administration, elected officials and midterm campaigns with irrefutable data to address the needs of the Black community.

An attendee wears a protective face covering that reads ‘vote’ during a “Get Out the Early Vote” drive-in campaign event with Democratic U.S. Senate candidates Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock on October 29, 2020 in Columbus, Georgia. With less than a week to go until Election Day, Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate in Georgia are continuing to campaign throughout the state. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

“As we head into the midterm elections, it is absolutely not a guarantee that the strongest constituency of the Democratic Party is going to be an anchor again for the Democratic Party,” she cautioned. “That has severe consequences, as you know, in this political climate.”

This survey comes as President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are seeing the worst approval rating that any president or administration has seen in recent years. 

Deborah Scott, CEO of Georgia Stand Up, told theGrio that the survey shows that the Biden administration’s low approval rating is due in part to the rise in inflation, including “gas prices and affordable housing.”

“You can’t even find affordable housing here in Georgia,” said Scott. “We know that these issues are kitchen table issues that our voters are concerned about.”

She added, “They’re concerned about how they can get their families to work, how they can get decent food and health care for their communities. So we know that these kitchen table issues affect every single Black woman [and] Black family in Georgia.”

Executive Director of GA Stand-Up Deborah Scott (L) speaks during a Make Good Trouble Rally at the Lincoln Memorial August 28, 2021 in Washington, DC. Voting rights activists gathered in Washington to mark the 58th anniversary of the 1963 March On Washington, where Dr. Martin Luther King delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech, and urged the Senate to pass voting rights legislations. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

On Thursday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis released its quarterly report on the U.S. gross domestic product, revealing that the economy shrank for two consecutive quarters — a usual indicator of a recession.

A day before the report was released, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre doubled down on the administration’s position that the country is not in a recession. “I don’t think the U.S. is currently in recession. I think there are just too many areas in the economy that are doing well,” said Jean-Pierre.

That same day, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the fourth time this year to drive down inflation. However, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell similarly maintains that the U.S. “is not in a recession.”

When it comes to an answer to the question if we are in a recession, Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, told theGrio, “It is premature to saber rattle about a recession — inflation just like unemployment impacts Black people disproportionately.”

Meanwhile, he stated there are areas of concern. “We are facing slower growth but the [Federal Reserve] must avoid creating stagflation,” he said.

Morial warned that “high unemployment and high inflation simultaneously,” is a recipe for a recession.

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