Make Blueval a Red Duval Again
I attended an inaugural meeting for the newly formed Republican association in my county. I briefly discussed upcoming meetings and events for the local and state chapter. As I was reflecting on the meeting, I decided to look at our local party website to see what other clubs I could engage to help grow the Hispanic membership. To my surprise, there is no listing of the club as an affiliated group. Not only has our Duval chapter been chartered in the county for months, but the current Republican Party Chair was a speaker at one of the meetings in February. What gives?
The club listed, however, is a Cuban American club with no active membership or forms. Why has the Republican National Hispanic Assembly in Duval been sidelined? Why has this shadow Cuban American Club not received support from the GOP with the basics of membership forms or a social media presence? The only Cuban American club I found listed in Jacksonville was a local nightclub.
In a county that gave the presidency to a Democrat for the first time since 1976, you would think there’d be more support given to minority groups where the GOP lacks in voter registration. Our party does not entertain identity politics, but numbers don’t lie. Between December 2020 and August 2021, voter registration numbers for Hispanics in Duval County did not increase but instead have decreased.
It is no secret that the Hispanic culture is rooted in conservative values and doesn’t want liberal social values pushed onto our children. Fortunately, the Biden administration will force many voters to reconsider their political affiliation, but that can’t be the end of it. We must make sure Hispanic feelings turn into conservative votes.
If the perception exists that there’s no support from our local party for Hispanic clubs, then why would that voter demographic feel that conservatives truly care? It seems Republicans are concentrating their message in a local echo chamber, and we must expand our message to a more diverse Hispanic community, rather than just Cuban Americans.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result. There is an opportunity to increase minority voter registrations in our county and the Republican party. The Republican National Hispanic Assembly and the local chapter in Duval could be a tool to communicate party values and to win hearts and minds. Hopefully, this was an administrative glitch, and we will see the desire to earn more of the Hispanic vote in Duval. It is beneficial for us all to unite in our fight to make Blueval a red Duval again.