WASHINGTON, April 28, 2012—In the 2010 midterms, voters sent two black Republicans to the House. Allen West (FL-22) and Tim Scott (SC-01) were the only two of a field of 32 to make it, and are currently the only African American Republicans in Congress.
Bill Randall was in the field with West and Scott, and is coming back for a second try this year in North Carolina’s 13th district.
“The district has been redrawn, and now it is more favorable for a Republican,” Randall said in an exclusive interview with the Washington Times Communities.
North Carolina holds its primary on May 8.
Randall was defeated in the general election in 2010 by Democrat Brad Miller, who is not seeking re-election.
Like Scott and West, Randall considers himself a Tea Party candidate, but is facing two fellow GOP challengers this year, both of whom brand themselves as “true conservatives.”
For his part, Randall is a former Democrat who came to Republican Party because, as he said, the Democratic Party was hijacked by the Left. “I cannot think of any standard or principle of the Democratic Party today that clearly lines up with the ideals and principles that were laid for us by our Founding Fathers.”
A retired Command Master Chief in the Navy, Randall grew up in Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans, where he was “taught personal responsibility, integrity, and love for God, family, and country.”
A lifetime sailor, Randall learned to appreciate hard work and American values and goodness. Only a handful of service members ever attain the position of Command Master Chief, the highest enlisted rank in the U.S. Navy.
“I do not see myself as a self made man…. Anyone who has a measure of success in life has other individuals who were instrumental in that success,” said Randall.
He got involved in conservative activism during the Obama Administration.
“The Tea Party is something that liberals fear, so they’re trying to discredit it,” said Randall. “One of the labels that have been put on the Tea Party is they’re racist. When you have a black, conservative, Tea Party Republican…that’s a threat.”
He knows that, as a black Republican, he faces additional pressure from the Left, but Randall is proud of his party’s record on race.
“Civil Rights legislation would not have passed had it not been for strong principled support from Republicans in Congress,” he recalled. “The most harsh and determined opposition to Civil Rights legislation came from Democrats like Al Gore Senior, like Senator Byrd from West Virginia.”
If he wins, he would increase the number of African Americans in the Republican caucus by 50%, assuming West and Scott hold on to their seats.
But Randall wants to be more than the next black Republican in the House. He wants to solve problems. Life on a Navy ship has given him some perspective.
When you are confronted by issues, “you don’t put them on the side. You look to the senior enlisted leadership to solve problems.”
Randall is composed and steady, and ready for the fight.
Learn more about the author at Rich-Stowell.com
Rich is a teacher and a soldier. In addition to writing the “Rich Like Me” political column at the Washington Times Communities, he is the author of Nine Weeks: A Teacher’s Education in Army Basic Training; Tunnel Club; and Not Another Boring Textbook: A High School Students’ Guide to their Inner Conservative.
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