Who was the first black president?

Two decades before the election of Barack Obama, novelist Toni Morrison dubbed Bill Clinton “our first black president.” She even said that Clinton was “blacker than any actual black person who could ever be elected in our children’s lifetime.”

Well, I could make an even stronger case for my father, Ronald Reagan, as “our first black president.”—but I won’t make that claim. I don’t want to diminish the justifiable pride African-Americans take in having a president who is genetically and culturally black. Our first black President is Barack Obama.

But the past two years have made one thing clear: Ronald Reagan was a far better friend to black Americans than Barack Obama has been. Just compare the Reagan and Obama records. Under Obama, black unemployment rose from 12.6 percent in January 2009 to 16.0 percent today. This means that black unemployment has increased by more than one-fourth since Obama took office.

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