Amidst all the good news from election 2014, the victories of Tim Scott, South Carolina’s Senator, and Mia Love, new Representative from Utah’s 4th District, are especially noteworthy.

There’s no way to deny that their race becomes important, if only because Democrats have emphasized race so very much. Sadly, these usually-baseless accusations of Republican racism have become more frequent, not less, since the administration of Barack Obama. Scott and Love are living, breathing refutations of that rhetorical approach, and proof that conservative black candidates can win even in a place like Utah, which is one of the whitest areas in the US.

Here’s an example of Scott’s approach to answering questions about his race and his conservative politics:

The Democratic Party must be shaking in its shoes worrying that the black community might actually start listening to someone like Scott or Love.

There is another reason to have special respect for black Republicans such as Scott and Love. By definition, they must be courageous and hyper-adept at defending and explaining themselves. If they are left-to-right political changers (and some are), they would also tend to be people who have thought long and hard about political principles and made independent and tough decisions based on that. But even if they are not political changers, they are quite obviously people who are not afraid to be different, and who have the courage of their convictions. They have been forged into steel in the crucible of the calumny that’s been heaped on them, not by Republicans but by liberals and the left.

They are both to be congratulated on their well-earned victories. They will need every ounce of their considerable strength on the road ahead.

[Neo-neocon is a writer with degrees in law and family therapy, who blogs at neo-neocon.]