Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney is “out of touch with the nation’s middle class” and his party’s policies reflect public policies better suited to the previous century, Vice President Joe Biden told a gathering of the nation’s Black journalists June 21.

Biden cast the upcoming presidential election campaign as a referendum on the nation’s character, according to the Huffington Post. “This is about more than the economy — it’s about who the hell we are,” he told the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) in New Orleans.
“I believe their social policy is a throwback to the `50s. I believe their foreign policy is a relic of the Cold War. And I believe their economic policy is little more than a double-down on the failed policies of the previous administration.”

Biden cited the Obama administration’s support for higher education aid for Black students and noted that Blacks and women will not advance if Romney wins in November.

There was no Romney rebuttal to the vice president’s remarks. The GOP presidential hopeful apparently declined an invitation to appear at the NABJ gathering.

NABJ President Gregory Lee, presiding over his first convention as president, told reporters that the organization’s invitation to the Romney campaign to the convention, held June 20 through June 24 was ignored.

The convention’s job fair, which draws hundreds of Black recruiters each year, attracted many budding journalists, but now they seem to come out for a different reason.

“I went to this year’s convention because I was uncertain about my career path, and I needed closure,” said Georgia State University student, Ashleigh Atwell, on her second-time experience. “It gave me everything and more. It just didn’t inspire me to keep going, but it inspired me to do new things.”

She said she attended a workshop on entertainment freelance that showed her goal is “doable.”

According to Jackie Jones, veteran editor and reporter, workshops and panels ranged from how to succeed in broadcast to the importance of African Americans getting involved in a green economy.

The convention “reassures that you’re good at what you do because so many times we get beat down,” she said. “We don’t get enough of that in our newsrooms and here, you can come where you’re supported and they are here to help you do your best work.”

Attendees included CNN anchor Soledad O’Brian, ESPN basketball analyst J.A. Adande and PBS’s Washington Week in Review host Gwen Ifill.


Jessika Morgan

AFRO Staff Writer