African Americans and Obama's domestic policy agenda: A closer look at deracialization, the federal stimulus bill, and the affordable care act

Academic Article


  • To assess President Obama's deracialized agenda-setting strategy, this article draws from two Gallup Organization polls and a 2010 survey of political behaviors and racial attitudes by the University of Arkansas Diane D. Blair Center of Southern Politics and Society and the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute. We extend the debate about deracialization by focusing on two of Obama's most important policy initiatives: the American Recovery and Reinvestment (ARRA) and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (also referred to as the Affordable Care Act). The debates over ARRA and the Affordable Care Act placed Obama in an unenviable position. The study will show that many African Americans supported these policies despite Obama's use of deracialized rhetoric. This support was not necessarily due to blind faith or racial loyalty. African Americans believed these laws would improve their own vulnerable situations and reinforce the federal government's commitment to remedying racial inequities. © 2013 Northeastern Political Science Association.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Polity  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Lewis AK; Dowe PKF; Franklin SM
  • Start Page

  • 127
  • End Page

  • 152
  • Volume

  • 45
  • Issue

  • 1