This week’s Democratic debate in Atlanta has shifted some of the party’s focus to African-American voters, particularly women. Although black voters aren’t all monolithic, conventional wisdom holds that Biden gets more African-American support than most other candidates.
This theory isn’t stopping for Elizabeth Warren from making a play for black women voters. On Thursday, she held an event for black women voters in Atlanta, and she made her pitch, painting America’s history as racist and even going so far as to call for slavery reparations.
During her speech, Warren made what sounded like a pretty transparent appeal to that voting bloc:
“The fighters I want to talk about tonight are black women,” Warren said at Clark Atlanta University, a historically black college. “When I am president of the United States, the lessons of black history will not be lost. Those lessons will live in every part of my presidency — and I will ask you to hold me accountable for that promise every single day.”
Warren cast her own campaign as learning from workers battles led by black women, from washerwomen in 1881 to the formation of the National Domestic Workers of America in the 1960s and ’70s. “Black women — then and now — are no strangers to facing resistance when they fight for justice, and black women — then and now — don’t give up easy.”
I’m not sure what appeal Warren would hold for black voters, especially women. I just don’t see the lecture-y, schoolmarm-y, wonky demeanor that Warren puts off attracting too many black women (but then again, I don’t see how anybody can hitch their wagon to her star).
Warren isn’t the only Democrat to make their pitch to black voters in Atlanta this week. Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders made appearances at Morehouse College, a historically black college in Atlanta.
It’s telling how heavy a pitch these candidates are making to African-American voters. Whether the adage is true or not, these camps believe that Biden has a lock on black voters so far, and they’re doing their best to peel as many as they can from him.