Democratic voters head to the polls today in South Carolina, where black voters are expected to give Hillary Clinton an impressive victory.
Democrats are still voting in South Carolina, but the Democratic candidates were already moving beyond this state on Saturday — both literally and figuratively — as a victory seems nearly certain for former secretary of state Hillary Clinton.
In South Carolina itself, Clinton sent surrogates including Rep. James E. Clyburn (D-S.C.) — the top-ranking black Democrat in the House — to polling places to make one last pitch. In many places, it seemed that the voters didn’t need it: Black voters, seen as key to Clinton’s victory here, praised her long experience in Washington.
“We’ve made a lot of progress in the last eight years, and Hillary is the best person out there to continue the progress,” said Al Tucker, a 67-year-old African American in Columbia. “You look at South Carolina, and we’re at the bottom in anything you can think of: education, poverty. I think Hillary would be good because she’s going to look out for us.”
If you're wondering why black voters are lining up behind Hillary in red Southern states, it's because the federal government is the only chance black folk have in the South. Who's going to advocate for them, Republicans at the state level, systematically destroying schools, economic opportunity, infrastructure, and voting in black neighborhoods? And not putting too fine a point on it, Team Bernie is heading for...whiter pastures too.
Sanders is looking ahead to contests in which he has a greater chance of winning — and a chance, he says, to hang onto the momentum and enthusiasm that his strong liberal message has generated in this unusual election year.
He has said he is prepared for a drawn-out battle for the Democratic nomination. But Super Tuesday could test whether voters will let Sanders go that far.
He will win his home state of Vermont, of course. But Sanders is also hoping for victories in such states as Oklahoma and Massachusetts, where polls show Clinton may be more beatable. Sanders also seems to believe that he has a chance of success in Texas, given his campaign schedule there Saturday. But recent polls have shown him down significantly.
If you wonder where the notion that Bernie is less than enthusiastic about the fact that he'll need black votes to win comes from, take a look at who Bernie is talking to.
Or in this case, ignoring completely and taking for granted.