Please enjoy the following article from the Journal of Urban Affairs, available online prior to print.
Of suspicious minds: Race, scandal, and the DC mayoralty; by Nyron N. Crawford
Local government in America has had a long and storied tradition of corruption, and Black mayors have often been prosecutorial targets in the federal dragnets. Yet, the scholarly attention to public corruption has had very limited examinations of the racial politics of political scandals in local government. The extent and persistence of corruption and other ethical transgressions in American cities raise several important questions. For example, are there racial differences in how voters hold mayors accountable for alleged misconduct when the voter and accused elected official is of their same race? This article examines whether Black voters adjust their practice of making moral judgments about elected officials or political ethics when the officials accused of impropriety are also Black. Using survey data collected by the Washington Post, which followed two mayoral scandals in Washington, DC, I demonstrate important racial differences in how residents responded to scandals surrounding the drug arrest of Marion Barry and the corruption case against Vincent Gray.