Sanders claims Biden is only winning black support because of Obama

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders claimed that he was trailing 2020 rival Joe Biden in support from black voters because the ex-vice president was touting his connection to former President Barack Obama to curry favor.

Speaking to Rachel Maddow in a wide-ranging interview on her MSNBC show Wednesday night, the host pressed Sen. Sanders (I-Vt.) on why he was struggling to improve his standing with black voters, specifically in the south.

“Well, we’re running against somebody who has touted his relationship with Barack Obama for eight years. Barack Obama is enormously popular in this country, in general, and in the African-American community,” the Democratic socialist told Maddow.

“In fact, there have been some polls recently that we are running ahead of Biden in the African-American community. So it’s not that I’m not popular, you know, Biden is running with his ties to Obama and that’s working well,” he continued.

When Maddow brought up that Sanders also struggled with this major voting block in 2016 when running against Hillary Clinton, he referenced her and her husband, former President Bill Clinton’s popularity with African Americans.

“Running against Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton is enormously popular [with black voters],” he argued.

“In 2016, we were running against Hillary Clinton. I was virtually unknown. Now we’re running against Barack Obama’s vice president, who was very very popular. But what I’m saying to you Rachel is that if you look at the polling out there, I am not unpopular in the African American community,” the Vermont senator added.

Sanders went on to say that he wanted to do better and believed he would do better with the African American community, but warned about the differences in how black voters will land depending on where they live.

“I think the vote in the north will be different than the vote in the south, but we’re running against some very tough competition there.”

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