Click here to read the first part of Rob Rennie's profile and interview with Republican Joe Kenner, who became Port Chester's first-ever African American to win a seat on the village's board of trustees.
Rob Rennie: "Why does the media tend to under-report ethnic minorities who have conservative beliefs?"
Joe Kenner: "It's very simple. The news media, who are typically left-leaning, are protecting the Democratic party. If it got out that it's even possible to be a minority and have conservative beliefs, it would shake the Democrat voter-base to its core. That's bad for them."
RR: "Have you ever had anyone call you a traitor for being a Republican?"
JK: "Of course, but my first question to them is, 'What has the Democratic party done for you?' and they rarely have an answer. I ask them, 'Why do you think taxes are so high?' You have to point out that the Democratic party profits by keeping people dependent on them. They're all millionaires. 'Limousine liberals' I call them."
RR: "How can we reach traditional Democrats and convert them into conservatives?"
JK: "We need to do a lot more outreach to the minority community. We need to go into black churches and just talk to people. That's something we're not doing. It's going to take time."
RR: "The debt issue is monumental. Why does the village continue to spend money it doesn't have in the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression?"
JK: "They're afraid to make a tough decision. They don't want to upset the unions. They're worried about keeping their jobs. The same thing is playing out nationally. No one wants to make the tough choices. Meanwhile, the taxes are killing us. They don't help the poor. All I see are for-sale signs lined up on people's lawns. Once a young couple gets married, they move to some other state because they can't afford to live here."
RR: "Let's be blunt. Is there any hope for a balanced budget somewhere in the near future?"
JK: "That remains to be seen. I will vote against any budget that calls for more spending, or higher taxes, that's for sure. On the other hand, it appears that we have a majority of the board this time, so we'll see."
RR: "On a lighter note, any exciting plans this summer?"
JK: "Besides watching the World Cup as much as I can, possibly leaving the US for a week or more for vacation. Possibly going to Martinique. I was in Senegal in January. Work out, stay in shape, that sort of thing."