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Black Vote Helps Push Biden to Frontrunner Spot, Beating Bernie and Bloomberg

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After a tough battle with Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT), former Vice President Joseph Biden sealed the frontrunner position in the race for the Democratic Party U.S. presidential nominee on Super Tuesday. Sanders, however, snatched a few key victories, one of which was California with 29.5 percent of the vote.
So far, Biden has picked up 390 Democratic National Convention delegates compared to Sanders’ 330.

The 2020 presidential primary election took place in California, 13 other states, and one U.S. territory (American Samoa) Tuesday March 3. Voters got the opportunity to back their favorite candidate to challenge President Donald Trump in November’s general election.

With five Democratic candidates remaining, after Mayor Pete Buttigieg dropped out of the race this past Sunday and Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s withdrawal Monday, Super Tuesday was a pivotal moment for presidential hopefuls.

Then, a day after the former U.S. vice president’s big win, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg dropped out of the race and endorsed Biden, his former rival for the nomination.

Over the course of their campaigns, Democratic candidates have relied on several different demographics to help swing votes in their favor. One such demographic is African Americans, and these candidates all had strategies to secure that vote.

Some relied on targeted advertising blitzes. Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bloomberg’s camps all ran campaign advertisements touting relationships with former President Barack Obama.

Meanwhile, Sanders continued to invoke his involvement in the civil rights movement and his relationship with prominent progressive personalities like recording artist Michael Santiago “Killer Mike” Render.

Biden also claimed to have been arrested in South Africa in the 1970s while attempting to meet Nelson Mandela. He has since retracted that claim following evidence to the contrary.
Before Super Tuesday, in the South Carolina primaries this past weekend, Biden led the race with Black voters, clinching 61 percent of the Black vote, according to Washington Post exit polls. Sanders trailed Biden with 15 percent of the Black vote.

On Super Tuesday, Biden secured 72% of the Black vote in Alabama, 71% in Virginia, 62% in North Carolina and 53 percent in Tennessee, according to USA Today.
Bloomberg has had some controversy regarding Black voters resulting from his “stop-and-frisk” policies when he was mayor of New York City and from subsequent statements, he made in 2015 defending said policies.

“So one of the unintended consequences is people say, ‘Oh my God, you are arresting kids for marijuana that are all minorities,’” Bloomberg said in his 2015 speech. “Yes, that’s true. Why? Because we put all the cops in minority neighborhoods… Why do we do it? Because that’s where all the crime is.”

Despite this, Bloomberg secured endorsements from several prominent African-American politicians like Assemblymember Shirley A. Weber, chair of the California Legislative Black Caucus. Some Black members of the U.S. House of Representatives, including Rep. Lucy McBath (D-GA), Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY) and Del. Stacey Plaskett (D-VI) endorsed the former New York City mayor as well.

Several high-profile lawmakers, including U.S. House of Representatives Majority Whip Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) — as well as former presidential candidates Buttigieg and Klobuchar — have endorsed Biden.

Former President Barack Obama also gave Biden his blessing.
Warren only won 12 delegates, placing her last on Super Tuesday behind Bloomberg, who picked up 36.

Digital Issues

Oakland Post: September 22nd – September 28th, 2021

The printed Weekly Edition of the Oakland Post for the week of September 22nd – September 28th, 2021.

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The printed Weekly Edition of the Oakland Post for the week of September 22nd - September 28th, 2021.

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Commentary

First in a series on Jobs in Oakland City Government: Please Do No (More) Harm

Oakland city government declares war on the unemployed. An overstatement? Not really.

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Gay Plair Cobb
Oakland city government declares war on the unemployed. An overstatement? Not really.
City administration professes concern for its residents who need help with access to jobs and training, while at the same time failing to issue contracts to the community organizations that stand ready to provide needed services.
The city council approved these contracts in June. As of late September, they have not been issued by the city administration.
Q: What does this mean? A: Non-profit organizations, operating on shoestring budgets in the best of times, have been required to advance their own funds in July, August, and September to serve the unemployed, with no reimbursement by the city because as the administration says, “Your contract has not been signed yet.”
Another impact: the workers who provide front line job services may not receive their paychecks on time…. creating unnecessary instability in their own households.
And who is responsible for issuing these contracts? Yup…it’s the city…. painfully tone deaf to the needs of the community, particularly those on the economic margins. Most of those served with job help are Black and Latinx residents who consistently suffer double digit unemployment. Many are returning home after incarceration.
And for this level of harmful disregard, the city receives  28 percent of scarce job training funds. Astonishing, since the city provides no direct services to job seekers.
As Oakland struggles with its horrific crime wave, it seems that attention would be paid to root causes, joblessness being paramount among them. Instead, the city administration seems intent on hobbling the very groups who stand ready to help. This happens year after year…. with no apparent consequences to an impenetrable bureaucracy.
Oakland, we can do  better than this.
We must.

The Oakland Post’s coverage of local news in Alameda County is supported by the Ethnic Media Sustainability Initiative, a program created by California Black Media and Ethnic Media Services to support community newspapers across California.

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Bay Area

Rosie the Riveter Trust to Celebrate History, ‘We Can Do It!’ Spirit

Tribute to storyteller and park ranger Betty Reid Soskin marking her 100th birthday

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Betty Reid Soskin/Wikimedia Commons

The Rosie the Riveter Trust is celebrating the history of the World War II home front at a September 26 gala, Making History Together. The fundraiser will highlight programs supported by the trust in collaboration with Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park: Every Kid Outdoors, Rosie’s Service Corps, and a documentary about the park’s Rosie Ambassadors, currently in production.

“We have a gem of a national park located right here in Richmond, California, where visitors can come learn about the home front and hear stories told in first person. This includes women and men who worked in the Kaiser shipyards, as well as those who spent years in the internment camps during the war,” said Sarah Pritchard, executive director of Rosie the Riveter Trust. “The history of the home front and societal changes that transpired during World War II are important lessons to preserve and share.”

The gala will also include a special tribute to Betty Reid Soskin, who turns 100 in September. Soskin helped establish the Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park, later joining the National Park Service and becoming the oldest ranger in the national park system at 85. 

Soskin’s programs at the park’s visitor center have captivated audiences since the center opened in May 2012. During her presentations, she shares her own experiences as a young woman of color during a time when segregation and discrimination were common, adding dimension to the stories of the home front too often left out of the history books. “What gets remembered is determined by who is in the room doing the remembering,” says Soskin in her 2019 film, “No Time to Waste.”

The gala will be held at the historic Craneway Pavilion, 1414 Harbour Way South (next to the park’s visitor center on the Richmond waterfront). The Craneway, which boasts a fabulous view of San Francisco, is the former Ford Assembly Plant where some 49,000 tanks and jeeps were assembled during the home front era. 

While individual tickets to the in-person event sold out on August 1, tickets to view the live-streamed event are still available. The event begins at 5:00 p.m., followed by a tribute to Soskin, highlights of the trust’s programs, a live auction, a Zoom afterparty, and entertainment.

Major event sponsors include the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Kaiser Permanente, The Marguerite Fund, Chevron Richmond Refinery, Accenture, Bank of Labor, California State Pipe Trades Council, Microsoft Corp., The Honorable Barry Goode, Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, IBEW Local 302, IBEW Local Union 595, and Marathon Petroleum. Event sponsorships are available beginning at $1,000.

Rosie the Riveter Trust is the official partner of the Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park, founded in 2000 in Richmond, California. The Park chronicles the explosive growth of wartime industry, the innovations fostered by visionaries like Henry J. Kaiser, and the extraordinary history of people who were challenged as never before and came together to overcome wartime odds with the “We Can Do It!” spirit.

Event proceeds support expansion of educational programs for all ages and preservation of historical resources for the Bay Area and the nation.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit the trust’s web site at www.rosietheriveter.org. For sponsorships, contact Executive Director Sarah Pritchard, at 510-507-2276, or by email at sarah@rosietheriveter.org.

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