"South Carolina is the African American primary"??

I am a little disturbed at some of the comments I am reading on this site about South Carolina including the one I just posted as the title of this diary. ANother Hillary supporter has posted "Will Obama just go away if we let him win this one?"

The conventional "wisdom" seems to be that because there are a lot of african americans in South Carolina it doesn't really matter if Barack Obama wins. He's black after all!

A few of the comments are of the "Let Barack have his day.." etc. Why? Because he is black???? The same people that consistently voted for the Clintons en masse don't matter now that they want to vote for Barack Obama?

It seems very insulting to assume african americans only vote for Barack because he is black. It seems kind of racist actually to think this way... Is it not possible that african americans prefer Barack Obama because he speaks more to their concerns?

Is this the general belief by Hillary supporters? That South Carolina doesn't matter because african american democrats make up a disproportionate percentage of the electorate (as compares to other states)?

The idea seems to be- and there are indications of this- that Hillary's campaign (and her vociferous supporters including on this site) is writing off South Carolina. Too many african americans there!

I always thought african americans mattered to the democratic party. Do we want a nominee that is going to ignore their voice? More importantly assuming Hillary goes - as seems likely- to win the nomination: is she then going to campaign for their votes? Will they THEN matter once again? (will it be like that Stevie Wonder song about how the white politician only shows up before election day?).

In sum I am surprised about readers on this site writing off South Carolina because it has a lot of african americans. I am also surprised about Hillary writing it off. I would also note that South Carolina has a lot of white people which is something that seems to be ignored!

Tags: Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, South Carolina Primary (all tags)

Comments

13 Comments

well

Well let those numbers speak for itself. Despite the outstanding work Clintons have done in the past in Arkansas and Nationally, despite their close relationship with that community, Obama is beating her by 75% to 25%...

Well if this is not the tribal mentality, I don't know what is... As a member of another minority group, I will not support anybody simply because he/she comes from my tribe, I actually prefer not to support a candidate from my tribe...

I guess that's the difference...

Let Obama has his coronation in South Carolina, we will not support him anyway...

by prisonbreak 2008-01-21 12:52PM | 0 recs
you should

You should ask yourself. If AA community does not even want to give a fair chance to Clinton, which non-AA candidate will be able to compete against an AA candidate in any election among this community?

I'm glad that Hispanic/Asian/Jewish communities are not so obsessed with this identity politics crap...

by prisonbreak 2008-01-21 12:55PM | 0 recs
This was always going to be tribal election.

Obama stoked it bit by the race play but it's completely devalued the whole result. He's now favorite son winning with black voters. Who cares. It's going to hurt him elsewhere. And by opening the gates on FL he's dropped a real doozy.  

by ottovbvs 2008-01-21 12:56PM | 0 recs
Re: South Carolina is the African American primar

I get upset when people dismissively refer to SC as the "black primary," but let's not oversell the case.  Of course plenty of black people are supporting Obama because he'd be the first black president.

Do you think my wife gets all excited about the latest Hillary commercial because she's gung-ho about Hillary's economic plan?  Do you think the Irish Catholics just happened to think JFK had the best policy proposals?

Do you think we've had 43 white male presidents because race has nothing to do with anyone's preference?

by Steve M 2008-01-21 12:57PM | 0 recs
SC

I'm not complaining when most women vote for Clinton. Nor am I complaining when most African-Americans vote for Obama. It's just the way it is. People feel loyal to their gender and race and will vote for them. Nothing wrong with that. Obama will get 80% of the black vote and will win the SC primary and the reason will be because of African-Americans. You can't deny that.

by RJEvans 2008-01-21 01:00PM | 0 recs
Re: "South Carolina

Actually, Obama unfortunately made this the case with the way he started campaigning after NH. I think that a large number of black voters would have voted for him without his playing the race card.

by Ga6thDem 2008-01-21 01:05PM | 0 recs
indeed

by Seymour Glass 2008-01-21 02:08PM | 0 recs
Live by the media...

die by the media.

The Media have made SC the "African American" primary.

That, coupled by the race card played by Jesse Jackson Jr DIRECTLY after NH, and there you have it... the black primary.

by sepulvedaj3 2008-01-21 01:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Live by the media...

This is true- the media has framed it as that.  Try finding a news article that talks about the South Carolina Primary that doesn't mention it and feature it prominently.  There probably AREN'T any.

by reasonwarrior 2008-01-21 01:52PM | 0 recs
Answers to your questions

Nobody wrote off the South Carolina primary until Obama and his surrogates such as Jesse, Jr. and Clyburn made it a "race" primary by accusing Bill and Hillary Clinton of being racists.

I always thought african americans mattered to the democratic party. Do we want a nominee that is going to ignore their voice? More importantly assuming Hillary goes - as seems likely- to win the nomination: is she then going to campaign for their votes? Will they THEN matter once again? (will it be like that Stevie Wonder song about how the white politician only shows up before election day?).

Hillary Clinton is building a new Democratic Party coalition consisting of working class white people, Latino/a voters, and women. This new coalition turns much more to the Southwest and away from the terminally Republican Deep South. Obviously, the members of this coalition would have the biggest seats in a Clinton administration, but the Clintons commitment to African American intersts is far too strong to not give them a voice in the Clinton administration, no matter how badly they are treating her and Bill.

But, make no mistake, we are watching a sea change in the makeup of the Democratic Party coalition.

by hwc 2008-01-21 01:18PM | 0 recs
Playing the black card was huge Obama gaffe.

I honestly believe that black voters were always going to vote for him just the way women voters are going to tend to vote for Hillary. This is so obvious it hardly needs stating and there's nothing wrong with it. It's life. What changed all this was when Obama overtly started playing the race card. Actually I think it was his staffers but once the genie was out of the bottle they couldn't stop it. I also honestly believe Clinton hadn't the faintest idea they'd react this way to what were innocuous and entirely accurate remarks about LBJ. However once he fell in the hole I've equally no doubt they kept him there as long as they could. But that's politics. Of course when all the black leaders down in SC and all the other usual suspects like Jackson joined in it completely changed the character of the SC election. All of sudden this had become a black favorite son contest. We can argue til the cows come home how it happened but it's happened and it's to Clinton's advantage.

This FL situation is also a slip up I'm convinced and the Clinton crowd have jumped on it. There's only one person opening up FL benefits and that's Clinton. Watch this space because I'll be surprised if they are not in full campaign mode in 48 hours.

And btw watch stock market tomorrow. It's probably going to mimic the rest of the world and crash. This also helps her enormously.    

by ottovbvs 2008-01-21 01:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Playing the black card was huge Obama gaffe.

Why do you believe the stock market helps Hillary vis-a-vis Obama?

by Steve M 2008-01-21 01:57PM | 0 recs
Because Clinton perceived good economic manager

in the 90's. It all goes to support her experience mantra.  

by ottovbvs 2008-01-21 02:00PM | 0 recs

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