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Courting Black Votes


Courting Black Votes

Amy Davidson

In March, 1988, Bernie Sanders, the democratic-socialist mayor of Burlington, Vermont, held a press conference to say that, for the first time, he would be attending his state’s Presidential caucus, in order to support the “historic” candidacy of the Reverend Jesse Jackson. “All political observers, regardless of their affiliations, now believe that Jesse Jackson in fact has a fighting chance to become the nominee of the Democratic Party, and has a fighting chance to become the next President of the United States,” Sanders said. That was an exaggeration.


This article reads like a sports-cast. It has very little background information and just seems like more in the way of pseudo-Liberal press pundits piling on their laurels for Mrs. Clinton.

"More primaries follow, in more Southern states with large numbers of African-American voters, on March 1st. Clinton, who has a civil-rights record stretching back over forty years, is overwhelmingly more popular with black voters than Sanders. Commentators have called this advantage her “firewall.”

To insist that Mrs. Clinton has a terrific Civil Rights record without discussing what her policies (along with those of her husband) have meant to the actual lives of Black citizens presents a very superficial analysis.

Also, the assertion that Mrs. Clinton is "overwhelmingly more popular" is offered without any suggestion that there is a virtual blackout on the part of mass media that's designed to keep Sanders' positions unknown.

Sounds like Gloria Steinem and/or Madeleine Albright "got to" Ms. Davidson.


I agree, this is a very curious shallow article that is finally about nothing at all. No, the issue isn't "whether Sanders himself is a serious challenger to Hillary Clinton." We are way past that. The issue is whether the political establishment--as represented in part by John Lewis, sadly, and the Congressional Black Caucus--can find a way to staunch the momentum of a popular uprising that grows stronger every day.

The issue is what Harry Belafonte said in his recent endorsement: "Now, here we are in 2016 sitting down with Bernie Sanders . . .with the revolutionary turn things have taken in his campaign, giving an opportunity for young people, for all people, to have a choice. To be able to turn America around and place it on a new course. That's why I've endorsed Bernie Sanders. I think he represents opportunity. I think he represents a moral imperative. I think he represents a certain kind of truth that's not often evidenced in the course of politics."

The issue is whether truth can overcome deception and lies.


" Sanders erring in the direction of idealism and Clinton in that of pragmatism—the same qualities they hold out to voters now."

Haha...I want to laugh. No, what makes Sanders so popular today is not idealism - though certainly every patriotic American should have a dose of it - but the urgency of restoring some semblance of democracy to this country. In short, power to the people and not merely to the one percent. The country is crying: Sanders hears that cry and, together with the vast majority of Americans, resolved to do something about it. As for Clinton, lies and deceptions do not a pragmatist make. Especially when one is beholden to the Wall Street types.


Excellent comment.


“I never met him..."

Lewis’s comment should not be taken to mean that Sanders is a civil-rights phony.

Well of course not. It should be taken to mean that Lewis is a phony. Just like this author, with her

Sanders erring in the direction of idealism and Clinton in that of pragmatism—the same qualities they hold out to voters now.