Some Democrats are angry about their presidential candidates; others are just embarrassed by them. But disturbing these liberals are not their contenders’ radical views — it’s their whiteness. And responding to the matter of race in the race, Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman Tom Perez has said, essentially: Don’t look at me. It’s the voters.
As the San Francisco Chronicle reports, “A Democratic presidential campaign field that was once touted as the most diverse in history has been whittled down to six candidates on its debate stage, all of them white. For Oakland Democratic Rep. Barbara Lee, that’s a problem.”
“Lee says the Democratic National Committee’s rules for determining who can participate in its presidential debates is ‘systematically discriminatory’ against people of color,” the paper continues.
So, much as how leftists assert that requiring voter ID is “discriminatory” and prevents minorities from casting ballots, Lee is claiming that equally applied rules somehow prevent minorities from successfully running for office.
Of course, the rules were known ahead of time and no one complained. As DNC communications director Xochitl Hinojosa told BuzzFeed News last month, “The DNC has led a fair and transparent process and even told campaigns almost a year ago that the qualification criteria would go up later in the year — not one campaign objected.”
This situational kvetching is par for the course, though. Hillary Clinton not only knew the rules of presidential contests in 2016, but said in a debate with Donald Trump that to question our elections “denigrates” the system. Yet she has been doing nothing but thus denigrating our system — by continually implying that the 2016 election was stolen from her — ever since her loss.
But given many Democrats’ intense focus on 2020-candidate white fright, DNC chairman Tom Perez was pressed to respond. He didn’t, however, deliver any message about the “content of character” mattering, not the “color of skin” (that’s so 1960s). Rather, he said that “voters are responsible for who lands on the stage. And it’s voters’ fault that the stage lacks any diversity,” writes Town Hall. The site continues:
“We’ve set forth a clear set of transparent, inclusive rules,” Perez said during an interview on MSNBC. “We set those rules out in advance. And it’s for the voters to decide.”
“If you want to make sure that a candidate of color makes the debate stage, when a pollster calls you, make sure you make that preference felt because that is how you move the polling needle and, again, the voters are the ones who are making these decisions,” the DNC chair explained.
In reality, though, last night’s debate stage had tremendous diversity. There was a Methodist (Warren), a Jew (Sanders), an apparent Episcopalian (Buttigieg), a Congregationalist (United Church of Christ — Klobuchar), a Catholic (Biden), and a man who had a Jewish father and Episcopalian mother and who claims to have faith in God (Steyer).
Oh, that’s not what the Left means by “diversity”? That’s the point. People are always diverse in certain ways and the same in others. Leftists don’t care about “diversity,” per se, but only as they define it.
Yet complaints about the Democrat candidates’ lack of DNC-preferred diversity are nothing new. They’ve included implications that the Democrat electorate is “racist,” too, which again only proves that the race-card tactic is more ploy than principle.
First, non-whites are a large percentage of the Democrat electorate — and they’re currently not choosing non-white candidates. “Polls consistently show black voters prefer former Vice President Joe Biden, and Latino Democrats favor Biden and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders,” as NPR reported last month, and Asian-descent Democrats prefer Biden and Sanders over Andrew Yang.
Second, while the United States is now currently only 61 percent non-Hispanic white, politicians are generally drawn from older age groups that are perhaps 75 percent thus constituted. So it’s not surprising that office seekers would be predominantly white.
Third, in 2008 the Democrat electorate chose a black man, Barack Obama, over not just Hillary Clinton but also white male candidate John Edwards. (Of course, Americans then chose Obama over the late John McCain in the general election and over Mitt Romney in 2012). Has the Democrat base suddenly become bigoted over the last decade?
Actually, many among them are bigoted, but it’s no sudden development. As the Washington Post wrote last June, finally admitting the obvious, “The worst thing to be in many Democratic primaries? A white male candidate.”
Then, consider a 2008 Gallup study that examined the general electorate’s attitude toward Obama. It did find that six percent of voters said they were less likely to vote for him because of his race.
Yet nine percent said that factor made them more likely to vote for him. White privilege?
You can forget male privilege, too. An experiment performed in 2017 by a political science professor found that, contrary to feminist caterwauling, President Trump would actually be more popular as a woman.
Don’t expect any of this to dawn on the Left, though. A time’s characteristic prejudices won’t be perceived by those embodying them.
Selwyn Duke (@SelwynDuke) has written for The New American for more than a decade. He has also written for The Hill, Observer, The American Conservative, WorldNetDaily, American Thinker, and many other print and online publications. In addition, he has contributed to college textbooks published by Gale-Cengage Learning, has appeared on television, and is a frequent guest on radio.