Phi Beta Cons

The Other Ward

Kudos to Ward Connerly for continuing the battle for a colorblind America. The Sacramento Bee reports today that Connerly is looking at nine different states in which to place race-neutral initiatives on the ballot in 2008. Here’s hoping that the entire issue of race-neutrality is a major issue in the next presidential election. A portion of the Sacramento Bee article follows:


Sacramento-based Connerly led successful efforts to prohibit preferences in California in 1996 and Washington state in 1998 before notching his latest victory in Michigan last month.

“I think we need another critical mass, if you will, of states that are in the race-free zone,” the former University of California regent said during a telephone conference with reporters, suggesting voters want to put the divisive issue to rest.
Exploratory committees have been established in nine states, Connerly said: Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming.
Connerly said a decision will be made in 45 to 60 days on which of the states have the best “resources” to place the issue before voters on Nov. 4, 2008, when the nation elects its next president.
“There are only 23 initiative states — three down and 20 to go — and we don’t need to do them all,” Connerly said. “But if we do a significant number of them, I think that we will have demonstrated — without doubt — that race preferences are antithetical to the popular will of the American people.”
Connerly, who founded his American Civil Rights Institute in Sacramento in 1997, said residents in several states under consideration have invited his organization.
“We will be going there and meeting with people and learning more about their signature-gathering process, learning more about the political dynamic of those states, what it would cost us to go in … (and) how much support we can expect,” Connerly said.

Clark Patterson — Clark Patterson is a senior at the University of Texas, Austin, and editor-in-chief of Contumacy Magazine.

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