Robert Blackwell, the nation’s first Black Republican mayor, died Tuesday night after a long illness, according to the Detroit Free Press. Blackwell was the mayor of Highland Park, Michigan, for two terms: one in 1968 and again as a Democrat in 1979. A Howard University graduate, Blackwell was known as an irreverent character who would hold news conferences in the “Tender Trap,” a topless go-go bar next to city hall. Blackwell was in his eighties. Funeral arrangements are pending.
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