February 11, 2016

About That Clinton Firewall…

Secretary Clinton’s campaign is putting all of their eggs in the South Carolina basket. In an exhausting three-page defeat memo released Tuesday night as the networks declared Senator Bernie Sanders the winner of the New Hampshire primary, Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook said black voters (and Latino voters in Nevada) guarantee Clinton victories in the next two nominating  states.

But NPR reported this morning that “young black college-aged voters are turning lukewarm on Clinton.” They offer a few examples:

“I’m probably gonna vote for Hillary,” Tolbert said at first. But the more she talked, the more she wavered. “Consistency is key for me,” Tolbert said. “And I think on certain things, I hear her say one thing and then I hear her say something else.” Eventually, when asked how she’d vote if the election were held right then, she said, “If I could vote today, maybe it would go to Bernie.”

And that’s the thing — young black voters in South Carolina who spoke with NPR say they look into Clinton’s record, they don’t like all they’ve seen.

At another Clinton rally featuring campaign surrogate Angela Bassett, this time at South Carolina State University, student Taylor Honore had some tough questions on Clinton’s record. “I did my background research on what Hillary has really done for the black community,” Taylor Honore told NPR, “and it kind of concerned me.”

Another voting bloc of concern to Team Clinton: women. It’s become increasingly clear Clinton’s campaign has taken women voters for granted, but The Associated Press notes New Hampshire women were more drawn to Sanders’ message than Clinton’s gender:

The numbers are staggering, and not just because Clinton — widely expected to be the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major political party — lost New Hampshire women to a 74-year-old grandfather. Sanders won the votes of 7 out of every 10 women under the age of 45, and nearly 80 percent of women under the age of 30.

Cracks in the Clinton firewall are beginning to emerge as young black voters and young women question Clinton’s record and willingness to say or do anything to win an election.