With 50 days until Election Day, the Biden campaign has kicked into high gear its efforts to reach Black voters, a bloc that had a 20-year low in voter participation in the last presidential election.
In a virtual press call Monday, senior members of the former vice president’s campaign reiterated its commitment to reaching all voters of color, but explained that that certain blocs needed to be reached more efficiently.
Biden Senior Adviser Symone SandersSymone SandersSunday shows – Trump team defends coronavirus response Trump campaign senior adviser says president is ‘not at all’ downplaying the severity of the pandemic Biden senior adviser: ‘We know that we have work to do’ to gain Latino support MORE highlighted Black men as a voting bloc that had “become more disillusioned and disaffected with the Democratic Party over the last couple of cycles.”
“Black men are concerned about their children, they’re concerned about their economic status, they’re concerned about the next generation in terms of education, in terms of their interaction with police,” said Rep. Cedric RichmondCedric Levon RichmondButtigieg, former officials added to Biden’s transition team The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Trump encouraged to call for calm during Wisconsin visit Trump-Biden race tightens as both sides expect close contest MORE (D-La.), co-chair of the Biden campaign.
He added that while these views were largely the same as other Black voters, that the messaging for Black men has been concerted and targeted.
Despite losing the Black vote by a wide margin to former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonCrowd aims ‘lock him up’ chant at Obama during Trump rally Author Cooper Lawrence discusses pros and cons of celebrity endorsements Trump campaign aide envisions ‘similar scenario’ as in 2016 MORE in 2016, President TrumpDonald John TrumpCrowd aims ‘lock him up’ chant at Obama during Trump rally Nevada governor: Trump ‘taking reckless and selfish actions’ in holding rally Michigan lieutenant governor blasts Trump coronavirus response: He ‘is a liar who has killed people’ MORE did poll in double digits with Black men.
A Hill-HarrisX poll released during the Republican National Convention found an uptick in Black support for Trump after the GOP used much of its programming to paint Trump as sympathetic to Black people.
The effort was intended to offset criticism that Trump is a racist given his descriptions of African countries as “—holes,” his equivocal response to white supremacists and counter-protestors in Charlottesville and his more recent rhetoric about Black Lives Matter protests that mirrored words used by opponents of the 1960s-era Civil Rights movement.
“Nobody is saying that we think that we’re going to get all of the Black vote because we’re the Democratic [ticket],” Richmond said.
One of these direct appeals was the launching of “Shop Talk,” a recurring program that “features roundtable discussions on the challenges impacting Black men across the country,” according to Sanders.
The initiative, which will have its next iteration Thursday evening, was launched right after Jacob Blake was shot seven times in the back at close range by police in Kenosha, Wisc. three weeks ago.
In addition to “Shop Talk,” the campaign noted that it released new ads focused on the Black experience in 2020.
“This latest ad release shows that the campaign has continued to reach Black voters while offering a snapshot of how different groups of African Americans and demographics of Black Americans are dealing with the reality of the current climate,” said Cameron Trimble, director of African American paid media for the campaign.