Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has had a polling problem with blacks since he announced his run for the presidency months ago — with recent numbers from CNN showing him at zero percent with this community. Zero.
But now he thinks he’s found his “in.”
On Friday, he jumped aboard the growing numbers of people tossing the “racist” label at President Donald Trump.
“My generation saw this country elect its first black president and then turn around and elect a racist to the White House, and we ought to call that what it is,” Buttigieg said during a recent National Urban League speech in Indianapolis that was reported by the Indianapolis Star.
Call it a cheap-shot sling-shot; Buttigieg’s trying to sling himself to at least single-digit placement in the polls by riding the wave of “racist, you racist” chants that have been plaguing this president of late.
This is the same guy who came out with the racist Douglass Plan, a policy that caters exclusively to blacks to counter the so-called inherent racism in America by doling out favors and entitlements to the select minority community. See? Racist. He doubled down on that racist plan to National Urban League rally-goers, though.
“I think for too long we have believed that we were on a path where systemic racism was going to take care of itself in this country,” he said, The Hill reported.
This is called a Hail Mary of politics.
Buttigieg is polling so low with blacks, he’s got nothing to lose.
So he’s ramping his selective reach-out, ratcheting his divisive rhetoric, rallying his audience with what he thinks is winning rhetoric — slamming Trump as a “racist.”
But in the end, this is a failing strategy.
Not only does Buttigieg have to beat Sen. Kamala Harris, who’s as radically left as he is but black, but he also has to win the hearts of more voters than just minorities. And campaigning on a message of special accommodations to blacks — i.e., the Douglass Plan — while screaming about the “racist” tendencies of the sitting president is hardly endearing.
It’s negativity wrapped in a social justice package.
It’s cheap politicking absent substance.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @ckchumley.
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