Although Hillary Clinton has billed herself as the best candidate for black voters to support, some black leaders aren’t buying it.
On Tuesday afternoon, the DMV (DC/Maryland/Virginia) branch of Black Lives Matter called on Hillary to stop “pimping black votes” and start “spending time convincing her bestie [Chicago Mayor] Rahm [Emanuel] to resign.”
PREACH! She legit should be spending time convincing her bestie Rahm to resign instead of pimping black votes… https://t.co/gwzQMEyL6R
— Freedom (@DMVBlackLives) February 16, 2016
Bish, you have no problem with those same criminal white CEO's lining your pockets with donations & speaking money. https://t.co/Mi9NCLUfn1
— Nessa. (@curlyheadRED) February 16, 2016
Progressives have criticized Hillary for her close ties to Mayor Emanuel, who has faced calls to resign over his administration’s lack of action in the shooting of Chicago teenager Laquan McDonald. Black Lives Matter has led the campaign for Rahm’s resignation.
The activists’ rebuke of Hillary came just hours after she adopted an accent mimicking that of the Reverend Al Sharpton.
Will Sharpton endorse Clinton? Her response. pic.twitter.com/mNKHkOAgf9
— Annie Karni (@anniekarni) February 16, 2016
“My lips are sealed,” Clinton said in a clearly altered accent.
The bad publicity for Hillary comes as she and Bernie Sanders are jockeying for the support of black primary voters, who up until now have overwhelmingly supported Clinton. That tide appears to be changing, however. Just lack week, progressive website The Nation ran an article titled “Why Hillary Clinton Doesn’t Deserve the Black Vote.” The article argues that “policies Bill Clinton enacted—and Hillary Clinton supported—decimated black America.”
Prominent black voices — including The Atlantic’s Ta-Nahisi Coates and former NAACP leader Ben Jealous — have endorsed Sanders over Clinton, causing progressive website Alternet to wonder: “Is Hillary Clinton Losing Her Lock on Black Voters?” Even Al Sharpton has said that Hillary will need to “earn” the black vote.
Clinton and Sanders will face off in the Nevada caucuses this Saturday. Clinton has faced sharp criticism after her campaign — in an apparent attempt to lower expectations — argued that Sanders will do better than expected in Nevada because “it’s still a state that is 80 percent white voters.”
Follow Peter Hasson on Twitter @PeterJHasson