Shocked by Joe Biden’s sweep of 10 out of 14 Super Tuesday states, Bernie Sanders is blaming his bad day on Wall Street billionaires and the Democratic Party establishment coalescing around his rival. The facts, however, suggest something more troubling for Sanders.
Yes, the Democratic “establishment” – whatever that may be in an era when political parties are pale shades of what they once were – is happy that the center-left vote is finally not being split among multiple candidates and, yes, wealthy donors are relieved that a democratic socialist may not, after all, win the party’s presidential nomination, but only a few days ago, those donors and insiders had pretty much abandoned Biden. What saved him were his deep ties to Black voters forged over a long career in the U.S. Senate and eight years as Barack Obama’s vice president.
Black voters gave Biden a huge win in the South Carolina primary on Saturday. That win forced his main rivals in the moderate track – Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar – out of the race and into endorsements of Biden. That sudden momentum led to all of Biden’s triumphs on Tuesday, the most lopsided of which were in Southern states where Black voters once again gave him big margins of victory.
So, Sanders can talk all he wants about billionaires and the establishment, but it would be a big mistake for him to believe his own rhetoric. The base of the Democratic party is Black voters, and the majority of them are solid for Joe Biden.
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