LOS ANGELES, CA--A lack of action on behalf of U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has raised the ire of some Black Republicans. According to Johnnie Morgan, a charter member of the South Los Angeles-Inglewood Republican Assembly (SLAIRA) branch of the California Republican Assembly (CRA,) McCarthy was set to be honored by the group for outstanding leadership.
But after exchanging several emails and phone calls, McCarthy never showed up to receive his award. There were also no representatives from his office present at the award ceremony, according to Morgan. Last year the award was given to Reps. Ed Royce and Dana Rohrabacher.
Morgan said SLAIRA works hard to increase the number of Black people in the GOP. He considered McCarthy's lack of participation in the event to be a snub.
"Congressman McCarthy as one of six recipients of the Scorecard Award 2017, is the only awardee that has yet to either acknowledge or accept the accolade, as of the date of this statement. Numerous attempts via phone calls and emails have been made from December 2016 - August 2017 to help remedy this rude, disrespectful and grievous matter," said Morgan.
John Wood Jr. is a Los Angeles-based Black Republican who ran unsuccessfully again U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) for her seat said, while SLAIRA is active and visible in the L.A. GOP community, it's not active in McCarthy's district.
However, he said ignoring SLAIRA would be a mistake, especially if Republican politicians want to try to diversify the party's membership.
"SLAIRA is the largest (mostly) African-American group of a much larger statewide grassroots organization (the California Republican Assembly) which may take offense at the snub. And if McCarthy has any interest in expanding the appeal of the party to include African-Americans in the broader country he should certainly start by paying some simple courtesies to African-Americans within his own party," said Wood.
McCarthy's office never responded to several requests for a comment.