Becoming the nominee of the party of Abraham Lincoln … has been the greatest honor of my life. It is on his legacy that I hope to build the future of the party, but, more importantly, the future of the country.”
Donald Trump, speaking at Great Faith Ministries International, September, 2016
In the course of American history, there are a few leaders who inarguably determined the fate of America’s survival, and had to choose to either stand up against the forces of destruction, or “go quietly into that good night.” Abraham Lincoln — a Republican — is one such man, and his legacy lives today in the descendants of those he freed.
R.W. Bray is the recently departed Director of Black Engagement at the Republican Party of Texas (RPT) and is one of the architects of President Donald Trump’s election miracle with black voters. Bray opened for Trump at his rally in Texas, eliciting a standing ovation, and was soon drafted as Trump’s representative with the African American community.
In a shocking move, Bray has left the Republican Party, and did so on the anniversary of Juneteenth, an important black holiday commemorating the end of slavery.
His reason for leaving is not what many might think. He describes the decision as “an evolution, not a revolution.” Bray’s rationale for moving on is about the success of Republican Party ideals, and his belief that success now requires “engagement.”
“We must move from ‘outreach’ to ‘engagement,’” Bray told me. “One involves talking AT black voters while the other involves an actual conversation WITH black voters,” he explained.
It is men like R.W. Bray who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to stop the suicidal agenda favored by liberal Democrats, and their attempt to “divide and conquer” in the 2016 presidential elections. His courageous stand likely bought America four more years of existence. This is the party of Abraham Lincoln, and we will not be divided,” Bray thundered at Trump’s historic rally in Austin, TX.
Bray continued: “We ought to be convicted that we’ve allowed the narrative of Republicanism to be rewritten. Like possums, we’ve rolled over and we’ve played dead, hoping and begging that the dangers of liberalism will pass us by.”
Bray’s objective is to make the Trump miracle more than a one-time fluke, and to fight the wormtongues in the Republican Party who shamelessly seek to misuse the new trend to protect their discredited establishment.
“The GOP is often a willing participant in its own destruction, with Donald Trump being an obvious (and welcome) exception to that rule. Even with Trump leading the charge, the GOP had to be dragged kicking and screaming across the finish line. Why is that?” Bray asked.
Ronald Reagan recognized the problem when he condemned the tendency to “snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.”
“Engagement starts not with ‘fixing’ the unfixable GOP, but with transcendence,” Bray explained.
“Engagement is about doing what has never been done before, like having a black conservative lawmaker from South Carolina come down to Houston, TX to speak at a school nestled in the heart of the historically black 3rd Ward on Juneteenth of this year (another first).”
It’s about “breaking down walls,” Bray passionately stated.
Standing in the way, are wolves who perversely want to dim the light, or snuff out the flame before the fire catches in too many hearts, says Bray.
“We are indeed transcending, but there are some within the GOP who seek to publicly support this metamorphosis and privately sabotage and/or contain its progression,” Bray warns.
Parties are shades of the same problem, according to Bray, since BOTH political establishments “patronize” and “belittle” black voters.
“Democrats may coddle and act like parents who are unable to cut the umbilical, but Republicans avoid talking to black citizens entirely if they can help it — and talk about them impersonally, like a code to be cracked,” he noted in his interview with me.
So, how do we begin the work of “transcendence”? Bray offers some direction.
“The Republican Party has failed to recognize the necessary evolution of Black Engagement. My departure as Director of Black Engagement was not a revolution but an evolution,” Bray stated.
“Conservative Blacks must be dedicated to stepping out on faith, teaming up with white brothers and sisters and forming Black Anchor Institutions that will support and promote conservative principles.”
The role of the GOP must evolve, not disappear: “The role of the Party should be one of assisting, collaborating and contributing financially to encourage the independent growth, but not ultimate control, of black anchor institutions,” Bray said, clarifying.
Currently the GOP is stifling, not stimulating the support of black engagement. “On a national level black conservatives who are actively trying to promote republicanism from within and outside of the Party have found themselves practically begging for additional support,” he said critically.
Bray also points out that core values the GOP discarded in its blind pursuit of votes are actually the issues that win with black voters and should be embraced. “Areas long abandoned by the political right — but prime for harvest — include harnessing black anger against the left’s disrespect of religion and lack of support for alternative education,” Bray said.
“We have the opportunity to lead the fight in areas of justice reform, school choice, energy exploration, job creation, vocational training and so many more, if only we would make ready our feet to tread heavily and with purpose into neighborhoods of color.” [Emphasis Added]
If the GOP’s abject failure to keep a simple promise to repeal Obamacare even when they have a majority is any indicator, voter engagement probably needs a boost from the outside.
Private institutions must become necessary. Clubs must establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with and commit to becoming a powerful tool, ready to be used in great number. We must be committed to training minorities who believe they’ve been called to run for office so that when they take that great leap of faith, they are well-known and supported.
Despite Trump’s win, there’s still a pervasive view in the GOP that black voters are a waste of time and resources. “Republicans must not assume the posture that some elections aren’t worth investing in; there’s always something the Party can do,” Bray stated.
Bray walks the walk, overseeing several elections in traditionally race-sensitive communities across Texas. The result? Gravity-defying wins in cities once known for institutional racism.
“Anthony Williams, the first black Mayor of Abilene, Texas is a perfect example. The Republican Party did not see the value in this race and many to date still don’t or are unaware of this incredible victory,” Bray said.
“We were able to meet up only once and he committed to a candidate training session we later used as the cornerstone of his campaign. None of that would have happened, had it not been for Ash Wright, a young white conservative who was bold enough to introduce us, despite the cards stacked against us.”
Sadly, no one talked about the stunning victory in Abilene, least of all the Republican Party of Texas, which had the most to gain from its promotion.
Last (but not least) on Bray’s engagement list, is for the Republicans to start bragging about their successes — who they are as a party. Democrats understand the importance of telling voters “what they’ve done for America,” even though most of their claims are false.
“Democrats run their entire race with Republican ideas, and lie about their own platform. Republicans always fail to brag about their successes, like the Civil Rights Act. Democrats take credit for the GOP Congress’ Welfare Reform, and the GOP is silent. Such insanity must end if we are to own the future,” Bray admonished.
“We’ve allowed the history of Republicanism to be re-written,” he continued. “Instead of crying over spilt milk, we should use the past as a compass. We must re-educate, re-align and re-affirm our commitment to Black Empowerment by shedding light on historical accounts and imitating the bravery of and courage of true Republicans,” he concluded, adding that, “The NAACP and the Urban League were originally Republican projects, even though the Democrats now count them as de facto mouthpieces.”