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Black Power list: Black conservatives need not apply

Empower Wisconsin | Dec. 28, 2020

By M.D. Kittle 

Julian Bradley has served as chairman of the La Crosse County Republican Party, vice chairman of the Third Congressional District GOP and chairman of the 2015 Republican Party state convention. 

The Franklin resident also is about to become a state senator — the first black Republican senator to serve in the Wisconsin Legislature. 

You would think such an impressive resume would qualify Bradley to be named somewhere on Madison365’s list of the 51 most influential black leaders of 2020. But the conservative who handily beat his liberal opponent to win the 28th Senate District seat doesn’t even get an honorable mention. 

The oversight (or slight), it would seem, is because Bradley is the wrong kind of African-American for the community news outlet’s liking: The conservative kind. 

‘From their perspective’ 

Madison365, says its mission is to keep Greater Madison’s communities of color informed, and to report news from their perspective. Henry Sanders, its publisher and CEO, apparently doesn’t think communities of color in and around Madison want to be informed about a free-market black conservative who campaigned on limiting government, protecting the unborn and preserving constitutional rights. 

The list, not surprisingly, is chock-full of big government bureaucrats, like Preston Cole, Gov. Tony Evers’ Department of Natural Resources secretary, and Makda Fessahaye, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett’s director of employee relations and, until recently, administrator at the Wisconsin Department of Corrections. 

There are plenty of “inclusion, diversity and equity” officers, educrats, and far left city council members, too.  

The list is long on radical left activists, including Milwaukee’s Frank Nitty, a “prominent advocate for the Black Lives Matter movement.” Nitty, whose real name is Frank Sensabaugh, has led several disorderly demonstrations against police brutality, protests that have devolved into violent confrontations with law enforcement officers. Sensabaugh was arrested last month on suspicion of sexual assault, but he was released from custody without being charged. The investigation was ongoing. The activist’s friend, present at the time Sensabaugh was arrested, was himself arrested after police say he punched an officer. 

And Madison365 included Mahnker Dahnweih on its list of 51 most influential black leaders. Dahnweih is “community power building coordinator at Madison-based Freedom, Inc.” a racist organization that sees white supremacy around every corner. The leftist group has declared it “will not denounce any Black person’s display of grief/or rage. All actions against racist state violence are justified and we will not minimize these contributions to liberations.” 

Role models’ 

Groups like Freedom Inc. believe the American Dream is racist. Bradley campaigned on it. 

“I believe in the American Dream because I’ve lived it,” he says on his campaign website. “As Republicans, we work to keep that dream alive. We are united behind the idea that everyone can achieve success through hard work, rather than government handouts. We believe in the power of individual liberty, of initiative, and of the pursuit of greatness — in all of its forms.” 

While Madison365 doesn’t deem Bradley worthy of its most influential list, failed Senate candidate Nada Elmikashfi made the cut. During the primary campaign for Sen. Fred Risser’s Madison Senate seat, Elmikashfi took to Twitter to defend the rioters and anarchists who dragged down historic statues, smashed windows and tried to burn down public buildings on the Capitol Square. 

Madison365 notes the would-be senator is the “Chief of Staff” for State Rep.-elect Francesca Hong (D-Madison). She would, of course, be chief of a one-person staff — herself. Assembly freshmen only get one staffer. 

Sanders notes Madison365 has published its Black Power list every year since its founding, “and it’s become the most anticipated thing we do.” 

“I want kids here in Wisconsin to see role models of people who are succeeding, to know that it’s possible for African Americans to achieve great things,” Sanders writes. 

He just doesn’t consider conservative African Americans as role models. 

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