Looking at Later Primaries, Bernie Sanders Works to Strengthen Black Support

Amelia

Former Staff
Jun 2014
45,963
27,866
Wisconsin
Even if he defeats Hillary Clinton in both Iowa and New Hampshire next month, Senator Bernie Sanders faces a daunting problem when the presidential race moves on to bigger, more diverse states: winning over black voters.

Starting this weekend in South Carolina, he is trying to solve it.

With a blitz of appearances, ads on black-oriented radio stations, a tour of historically black colleges and the help of well-known and not-so-well-known African-Americans, Mr. Sanders is racing to get the word out: He is a lifelong civil rights advocate who marched with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

He talks substantively about issues vital to many blacks, like “radically rethinking police procedures,” even in front of all-white crowds. And the economic policies that he relentlessly argues would combat income inequality and injustice across the board, he says, apply all the more to persistent racial disparities in American life.

“We have a real tragedy with youth unemployment,” Mr. Sanders thundered last weekend in Des Moines, where the only black faces in the crowd of 1,500 appeared to be those of journalists following him. “Kids who graduated high school who are white: 33 percent unemployed or underemployed. Latino: 36 percent. African-American: 51 percent.”

Mr. Sanders has been addressing his challenges with black voters for months — particularly with those who fondly remember taking a chance on another newcomer to the national stage in 2008.

“People will see,” said Kevin Williams, 50, a Charleston, S.C., hotel manager who praised Mr. Sanders’s early support for a $15 minimum wage and free college tuition. “He’s starting to connect with African-Americans. They’re feeling Bernie is a progressive we can trust.”
Read more: Looking at Later Primaries, Bernie Sanders Works to Strengthen Black Support




When the time comes, Sanders will have the foundation needed to win the national race. Just a matter of becoming known, and by next November that won't be a problem.
 
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Amelia

Former Staff
Jun 2014
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27,866
Wisconsin
Shaun King, of Black Lives Matter fame, endorses Sanders:

Today — on what happens to be Dr. King's birthday — I am proud to endorse the presidential candidate who I believe most embodies the values and ideals of the man who scared the hell out of the American government and was assassinated in 1968 after so bravely fighting against the Vietnam War and for income equality.

As a general rule, I don't trust many politicians, but I trust Bernie Sanders — the man walks the walk and talks the talk. He is, without a doubt, the most consistent politician in America and has been fighting for universal health care, access to education, equal pay, equal rights and the complete overhaul of how we do justice in this country for his entire career. I dig it.

Twelve months ago, I'll be honest with you, I could fit all I knew about Sanders into a few sentences. It went something like this:

“Hey Shaun, what do you know about Bernie Sanders?”

"The senator in Vermont? The disheveled dude? He's the real deal. Not in it for the money. Heard him on TV a few times kicking knowledge about income inequality and he was the truth. I keep hearing that he's a socialist."

That's it. That's pretty much everything I knew about the man.

I didn't know he was born and raised in Brooklyn.

I didn't know anything about his volunteer work in the 1960s during the Civil Rights Movement.

I didn't know he was one of only two current senators to attend the March on Washington.
Much more: King: Why Bernie Sanders is the best candidate in the running for the White House
 
Jun 2014
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Bernie doesn't have a problem with minority voters because of anything that he has done, but because of what he hasn't done. Bernie has spent his entire political career in a state that is almost exclusively white. Therefore, having never represented minority voters, he's never had opportunities to work on issues of specific concern to minorities. I sincerely doubt that anyone views Bernie as a racist, minority voters simply have no legislative record to evaluate regarding Bernie's direct involvement in issues that affect minority citizens. Should he win the nomination, I see no reason for minority voters to refuse to support his candidacy.
 
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The big money will work with even more urgency now to bolster Hillary and stop the Bern. I expect her opposition researchers are working overtime right now seeking nuggets to dent Bernies momentum. I expect she will get dirtier as the desperation creeps higher in her campaign.
 

Amelia

Former Staff
Jun 2014
45,963
27,866
Wisconsin
The big money will work with even more urgency now to bolster Hillary and stop the Bern. I expect her opposition researchers are working overtime right now seeking nuggets to dent Bernies momentum. I expect she will get dirtier as the desperation creeps higher in her campaign.
That would not go well for her.

Mark Shields' and David Brooks' advice to her on Friday was to roll with whatever happens in Iowa and New Hampshire and have faith in all the work her campaign has put into building their networks in other states. She'll injure herself unnecessarily if she attacks Bernie. Will make it less likely that Bernie supporters will transfer their support to her if she wins the nomination, and will make unforced errors such as the recent incident with Chelsea.

Of course I don't mind if she makes those mistakes.

Mostly though I'm glad to see the signs that Sanders will have legs beyond these first two contests. Fabulous news!
 
Jun 2014
50,219
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United States
The big money will work with even more urgency now to bolster Hillary and stop the Bern. I expect her opposition researchers are working overtime right now seeking nuggets to dent Bernies momentum. I expect she will get dirtier as the desperation creeps higher in her campaign.

Meh. Neither of them is a Republican, so I don't expect a lot of feces flinging. They'll compete. That's what opposing candidates seeking the same position do, and of course, there will be those who attempt to spin the competition as smear campaigns. All that I've seen thus far between these two candidates is attempts to highlight differences in their approach to implementing the same basic policy agenda. At least they have a policy agenda. That's more than can be said for the GOP candidates.
 
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