Louisiana State Senator Switches Party, First Black Republican Since Reconstruction
On Friday, Louisiana State Senator Elbert Guillory switched his party affiliation from the Democrat to the Republican party, becoming the first black Republican in the Louisiana legislature since Reconstruction. "I am as of this day joining Frederick Douglass as a Republican," he said.
Democrats in Lousiana are not happy:
State Democratic Party executive director Stephen Handwerk called the party switch “a craven display of political opportunism.”
Handwerk called on Guillory to resign his senate seat “since he has chosen to abandon the Democratic Party values that the voters elected him to represent.”
In his speech at the @Large Conference in Baton Rouge, Guillory repeatedly referred to the Democrats as 'the party of disappointment." He brought up his growing disgust with Democrats over issues like abortion, Benghazi, and immigration.
He accused Democrats of advocating policies that encourage a high teen birthrate, a high unemployment rate, and a high incarceration rate in the black community. He told the audience of black conservatives and their supporters that black Americans need to lead "by not putting all our eggs into one basket."
Guillory, a practicing attorney, was known as a conservative Democrat and had been wooed by the Republican party for months.