Democrats Need to Stay Serious About Race

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Politico says that Democrats are having a moment on race:

A reckoning inside the Democratic Party on racial identity is underway, as President Donald Trump unleashes racist tweets, attacking lawmakers of color and stoking fear among his base about primarily Latino immigrants. But Democrats are being forced to examine their own pasts, too — namely the party’s role in implementing policies that disproportionately hurt minorities for generations.

….The discussion around racial identity has reached a turning point this cycle. Most of the Democratic presidential hopefuls are speaking explicitly about how their proposals would address minority communities affected by the racial wealth gap, higher maternal mortality rates, and the threat of deportation after living in the United States for years. Biden and Booker dueled last week over their own records on criminal justice, with Booker calling Biden the “architect of mass incarceration” and Biden criticizing Booker for a federal investigation into the Newark Police Department during Booker’s tenure as mayor.

….New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has already signaled he will attack Biden over past comments on working with segregationist senators and may mention, as he did in the first debate, that he is the only one on stage with a black son.

I sure hope everyone manages to restrain themselves tonight, Bill de Blasio very much included. It’s great to be talking about racial issues in a substantive way, but playing woker-than-thou with fellow Democrats is a recipe for catastrophe. It’s almost impossible to imagine a way in which this ends well.

Joe Biden has lots of vulnerabilities, and it’s still only July. There’s plenty of time to take him down on other fronts. Dems should treat race seriously, not get into food fights over who can best prove their purity bona fides.

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

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ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

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