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Many black voters don't like it when you criticize Obama

DCblogger's picture

Bernie Sanders' Race Problem: Why People of Color Aren't Feeling the "Bern"

Sanders' problems are three-fold: one, for all his high-flying rhetoric, he has little to show for his quarter century in national public office (Sanders first came to Washington as a House member in 1991). Secondly, and more importantly, Sanders is too interested in portraying himself as a drag-out "fighter" than a pragmatic doer. Third, his contempt for President Obama's painstakingly negotiated trade deals is a direct insult to minorities.

You cannot go after the oligarchs without going after, at least by implication, going after Obama's record. So I don't know what to suggest, except that Bernie's team will have to find a way to reach out to the black community. Giving interviews to black media outlets would be a good start.

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nippersdad's picture
Submitted by nippersdad on

and they REALLY do not like any kind of criticism of his Administration. I told one commenter that O would not want me on his jury for war crimes and they about had a coronary.

Don't know what to say. If you want equal protection under the law then that means prosecuting the law equitably. Anything else would be the very kind of corruption that the BLM has coalesced to fight. Sometimes the truth hurts.

Barmitt O'Bamney's picture
Submitted by Barmitt O'Bamney on

Let me help you out here. You appear to be quoting from some Obot rag...

If you point out to an Obot that there are now for the first time ever more black children living in poverty1 than white children in poverty you are, in fact, criticizing Obama. And to criticize Obama -no how indirectly- is to directly insult minorities. Do you see how it works now?

1. Because the greatest increase in inequality ever recorded has occurred during the present administration, and during this prolonged non-recovery period of declining labor force participation rates, widespread reductions in government payrolls, stealth inflation, collapsing middle class wealth and eroding wages, black households have lost ground economically relative to white households.

nippersdad's picture
Submitted by nippersdad on

And, further, all O'bots are not black. The reference was to the mindset not race.

V. Arnold's picture
Submitted by V. Arnold on

Okay, got it; O'bot didn't even register; I'm so far from that, it just didn't occur.
It would have been nice to hear that as an addendum.

nippersdad's picture
Submitted by nippersdad on

this is going to be a very real problem for Sanders. You cannot criticize the status quo without implicitly criticizing Obama/Holder, and that simply enrages the O'bots out there. Sanders is doing a good job of threading that needle thus far but at some point he is going to have to take it head on, and that will not be pretty.

There are many in minority communities in which Sanders' cooption of MLK's "there can be no social justice without economic justice" meme is resonating, but I think that is because it is both the real problem and it sidesteps the issue of a minority President and AG's knee jerk support of the status quo (along with the rest of the court of Versailles on the Potomac, of course). This is why he has not gone on the attack thus far, in addition to his running in a Party apparatus not his own, but I don't know if that can last without bringing it home with real examples of why we find ourselves where we do.

So, surrogates on social media, like myself, taking the heat for him and thereby eventually taking the edge off of the eventual inevitability of placing blame where it rightfully rests; with a status quo that also happens to have minorities leading it.

Just my $.02 worth of experience on the ground, so to speak.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

I don't think he will have to take it straight on, I think he can thread this needle. He is running against the oligarchy, which is, by now, hated by all. No reason he cannot continue with that all the way to November 2016. But this is a tricky one. I am sure he knows it, and his staff know it, so they will come up with something. I notice that black supporters are given visibility at all his events. I am sure they have something more in mind.

nippersdad's picture
Submitted by nippersdad on

I thought it was really exciting that he has some prominent rappers endorsing him now. That and other endorsements like them (not from the black misleadership class, though) should go a lot further than we may think in raising his profile within the AA community.

Submitted by lambert on

... that's a big, big problem. And if all Sanders has is a speech.... We've been there.

I'm all for putting the ideas in circulation, but we need to separate the ideas from the candidate.

Submitted by lambert on

... if we had some eggs.

This ceaseless one-note messaging is getting tiresome. If you want to relate this to particular cases, please do so. Otherwise, we know where you stand and generic restatements don't help you.

Submitted by lambert on

Here it is:

To pass Fast Track, the administration had to finesse Malaysian involvement with slavery and human trafficking, where Malaysia is a Tier 3 (lowest possible) human trafficking violator (State Department "2014 Trafficking in Persons Report"), since Malaysia is a potential signatory.

If anything, THAT is a "direct insult to minorities," painstakingly negotiated or not.

There are plenty of good points in this article, but focusing on TPP process ("painstakingly negotiated") as opposed to outcomes (mass graves in Malaysia) is not one of them.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on


Consider, FS Clinton has been a national figure since the impeachment of President Nixon--40 years ago, give or take. And Sanders is mostly a regional figure--except maybe to Dem Party/Lefty Activists/Bloggers.

Several weeks ago, on XM's 'The Press Pool,' the host was interviewing a reporter and mentioned off-hand that in the early Spring, 50% of Democrats had never heard of Bernie Sanders!!!

By May or June, though, this statistic had dropped to 25% of self-identified Democrats--quite an improvement.

Anyhoo, if there is any validity to this statistic, it may account for some of the more lukewarm receptions in the Black Community. After all, from the statistics that I've seen, the progressive blogging community is fairly heavily a white community (or at least, at DKos, it is).

As for criticizing PBO, I don't think that it will necessarily cause any more repercussions for Sanders, than it would for any other of the Dem Party candidates. From what I hear on C-Span, many in the Black working class community would love to see a much different immigration policy/legislation than that sought by this President.

I think that once PBO can't be hurt--meaning, when he's almost out the door--we may see a considerably different attitude about more than one Dem Party policy. Again, I believe that the Black Misleadership Class has been very effective in silencing much of the Black Activists/Community (during his Administration). And some of the more corporatist Dem policies will soon be fair game to criticize--especially economic/trade policies, when the criticism no longer affects PBO.

Could be wrong, but that's my take.