'Each one, Bring one' aims to see higher Black male voters at polls

WPTV speaks to several undecided Black male voters
Posted at 11:18 PM, Oct 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-24 00:57:05-04

RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. — There are approximately 30 million Black voters eligible to cast ballots in the general election. It's a record number and Florida is one of nine competitive states with the highest share of Black voters. That increases the impact of the Black vote and there's a campaign brewing called "Each one, Bring one" to see higher numbers at the polls.

After months of campaigns and nationally televised debates, WPTV interviewed some Black voters who are still just as undecided.

"To be honest, I don't know. I don't really know," said Joanna Joseph, an undecided Palm Beach County Black voter. "I don't feel either candidate is a good fit. But Americans have got to pick one."

What Black voters care about is just as diverse as their backgrounds -- a reality for a population that now represents 14% of Florida's electorate.

"We're a diverse group," said William McNutt, an undecided Palm Beach County voter. "We vary based on age, income, education and we also have different backgrounds. We're African-American, Dominican, Haitian and Jamaican."

That's the motivation behind a campaign fueled by black leaders in law and politics in West Palm Beach and Riviera Beach. The goal to get more Black male voters to the polls. In 2016, Black women outpaced the number of Black men casting ballots by 10 percent.

"Generally, from my perspective, African-Americans tend to vote out of fear or out of history," said Richard Ryles, owner of the Ryles Firm. "(President Barack) Obama was history and now we're voting out of fear."

"I think the difference between (West Palm Beach) and cities like Detroit or (Washington) D.C. is that Blacks have seen what strong political leadership has done for them in their own personal lives," said Riviera Beach Council Member Douglas Lawson. "We need to be intentional with our vote. I'm not telling you who to vote for. I'm telling you to just exercise that right."

Lawson, Ryles and others plan to bring voters to the polls Oct. 25 at Wells Recreation Center in Riviera Beach at 3 p.m. The goal is to encourage the mobilization of Black men across South Florida to bring others to the polls through Nov. 3.

"Nothing will truly change if you don't get out there and vote," said Lawson.

To learn more key facts about eligible Black voters in battleground states, click here.