Former Bush appointee and conservative commentator Tara Wall is set to release a new documentary examining the relationship between black Americans and the Republican Party.
The film, “Souled Out: The Documentary,” looks at how the GOP went from being the party of Lincoln to one that a majority of blacks avoid.
“This used to be the party for black Americans and it is not anymore, why is that?” Wall wondered aloud in an interview with The Daily Caller. “So we are examining that, first from a historical perspective, and then where it has brought us today.”
According to Wall, the question is whether Republicans have sold out black Americans.
“Blacks come to the party for different reasons than even the party, I think, believes. We say this all the time: ‘Blacks are conservative, they just don’t know it’ — but then nobody really examines beyond that,” she said. “‘Yes they are conservative, but they are socially conservative.’ ‘Yes they are conservative, but they vote for a very liberal president that defies basically everything they believe in.’”
Wall cited the example that a majority of blacks support school choice but they do not realize President Obama is against school choice in Washington, D.C.
“The [Republican] Party constantly says they want to reach out,” she said. “They want more minority inclusion, they have been saying that for years, but we are not getting there.”
The film will examine these disparities with interviews from the likes of President Bush, heavy weight champion Evander Holyfield, former Bush campaign manager Ken Mehlman, Florida Republican Rep. Allen West, former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele and others.
“We [blacks] are inherently conservative socially, but until the party is able to articulate other issues beyond wedge issues to black Americans and to black Republicans and independents, then I think they are losing sight,” Wall said.
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She added that there are many different kinds of black Republicans and blacks who could be drawn to the Republican Party — it is just a question of Republicans recognizing a diversity of opinion, broadening the proverbial tent and accepting more viewpoints into the GOP.
“Now I don’t think the platform needs to change, but I do think you have to broaden your swath,” she said, explaining that the narrow view is not exclusive to the Republican Party. “I mean black folks and the black media do it all the time. They think there is one kind of black conservative, that they are all so-called “Uncle Toms.” And that is what I want people to see, that their are different faces [of black Republicans].”
The filmmaker said that the Republican Party needs to embrace a conversation on race “in very real terms” in order to attract more minorities to their ranks.
Wall added that she never expected to become a voice for the Republican Party, but explained that she has always been “very conservative” because it fit the values that she grew up with.
Asked if she believes the GOP has “sold out blacks,” Wall was coy, saying that we just need to see the film to find out.