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Associated Press File Photo / U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-South Carolina, in a speech to the viral Republican National Convention, said his party offers the best chance of "making that American Dream a reality" for families like his.

A decidedly nonpolitical individual called our attention to a video last week offered up by a Black candidate for Congress.

"I agree with all of this," the individual said.

We were intrigued.

The congressional candidate, Republican Kim Klacik, was walking through the mean streets of Baltimore in a red dress and red stilettos lamenting act the fact Democrats had run that city — her city — for more than a half century but that the once-thriving city had disintegrated into a poster child for poor public education and crime.

Charm City, she said, has become a lot less charming.

Maryland's 7th congressional district has been represented by a black Democrat since 1971.

Klacik's simple message at the end of her two and a half-minute video was this: "Black people don't have to vote Democrat."

That same candidate was one of the speakers for the first night of the virtual Republican National Convention Monday. Her video, which has been viewed more than 11.4 million times, undoubtedly caught the eye of a party that is hoping its leader's actions — as opposed to the usual Democratic rhetoric — will pierce a demographic whose voters cast their ballots for Democrats about 90% of the time.

Klacik recited how Democrats had taken many of America's great cities and run them "into the ground," despite forcing their inhabitants to pay ever higher taxes.

"And yet," she said, "the Democrats still assume that Black people will vote for them, no matter how much they let us down and take us for granted. Nope. We're sick of it and not going to take it anymore. The days of blindly supporting the Democrats are coming to an end."

President Donald Trump got about 8% of the Black vote in 2016. Evidence is that that figure likely will increase in November. But how much, no one knows.

If it merely doubled, analysts have said, it could permanently alter the electorate for both parties.

Several speakers at the convention highlighted the president's record on criminal justice reform, school choice and the economy, where specific actions were taken and results followed, compared to the gloomy Democratic convention last week where one speaker after another described a horrible country unrecognizable to most voters.

"In much of the Democratic Party," said Nikki Haley, the former ambassador to the United Nations, "it's now fashionable to say that America is racist. That is a lie. America is not a racist country.

Haley, a Republican and the daughter of Indian immigrants, was the first minority governor of South Carolina.

"America is a story that's a work in progress, and now is the time to build on that progress and make America even freer, fairer and better for everyone," she said.

United States Sen. Tim Scott, R-South Carolina, who is Black, said the Republican Party offers the best chance of "making that American Dream a reality" for families like his, which went "from cotton to Congress in one lifetime."

Where Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden led an effort to pass the 1994 crime bill "that put millions of Black Americans behind bars," he said, Trump's bipartisan First Step Act began to reverse that "and made our system more fair and just for all Americans."

Scott, who noted Biden has been in Washington 47 years, challenged voters to "look at [the former vice president's] actions" and to "look at what he already did and did not do."

"Joe Biden said if a black man didn't vote for him, he wasn't truly black," he said. "Joe Biden said black people are a monolithic community. It was Joe Biden who said poor kids can be just as smart as white kids."

Scott also pointed to Democrats' efforts to scuttle any legislation on police reform, which he had tried to advance in June.

"Democrats called our work a token effort and walked out of the room during negotiations because they wanted the issue more than they wanted a solution," he said.

Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Illinois, had called Scott's work a "token, half-hearted approach."

"To call this a token process," the South Carolina senator said at the time, "hurts my soul."

Legendary University of Georgia running back Herschel Walker also spoke at the convention. He and Trump had been friends for 37 years.

"Growing up in the deep South," he said, "I've seen racism up close. I know what it is, and it isn't Donald Trump. Just because someone loves and respect the flag, our national anthem, and our country doesn't mean they don't care about social justice. I care about all of those things. So does Donald Trump. He shows how much he cares about social justice in the black community through his actions, and his actions speaks louder than stickers or slogans."

We return to Klacik, though, because we believe as a young, first-time candidate she has the power to deliver a message to a new generation of Black voters that, in her words, "the color of someone's skin [doesn't dictate] their political views. We're not buying the lies any more."

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