Skip to content
Sign up to receive our free weekday morning edition, and you'll never miss a scoop.
Jim Clyburn

Clyburn hits the road to help Biden with Black voters

News: Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) is embarking on a cross-country tour to help President Joe Biden shore up his support among Black voters in swing states.

Clyburn will speak directly to Black voters about Biden’s accomplishments even as the president faces worrisome polling showing he’s struggling with voters of color. The 83-year-old Clyburn insists it’s not accurate, however.

“I don’t know what this polling is all about,” Clyburn said in an interview. “Joe Biden does not have a problem with Black voters. Whatever you hear to the contrary, that’s just not true.”

Clyburn, who stepped down from House Democratic leadership this year, spent last weekend in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia talking to voters at Black churches and local Democratic party events. He warned there is a lot at risk this election and made the case for why they should turn out for Biden. Rep. Dwight Evans (D-Pa.) joined Clyburn to reach Black workers at union halls.

Clyburn has also been addressing historically Black universities on the importance of voting in this election. Last Friday, he introduced Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin at South Carolina State University.

“I want young people to look at this year’s campaign and be selfish about their vote,” Clyburn said.

Clyburn is also expected to go to Ohio, Michigan, Arizona and Nevada later this year.

The campaign: The Biden campaign is highlighting its efforts to sway Black voters directly through digital, print and radio ads. In August, the campaign launched a $25 million advertising campaign to reach Black audiences in swing states.

The campaign is launching another $14 million ad blitz this month targeting voters of color in battleground states.

So far this year, Biden has done local radio shows with large Black audiences in South Carolina, North Carolina, Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia. Vice President Kamala Harris has done countless such events as well over her three-plus years in office.

Top campaign surrogates include Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens, Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) and Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), among others.

The Trump angle: Democrats’ efforts to secure support for Biden among Black voters come amid a simultaneous push by former President Donald Trump to make inroads with the same group.

A pro-Trump group aired an ad in the Macon, Ga., market earlier this month that hits at Biden’s struggling support among the key voting bloc.

Rep. Wesley Hunt (R-Texas) said he believes Black voters could be the ones that push Trump over the finish line to beat Biden.

“This is the voting bloc that’s actually going to do it,” Hunt told us. “For those people that are concerned about President Trump losing suburban women, this is the delta that will get made up in November.”

But House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries said he’s confident Black voters are going to come home to Biden as the cycle continues.

“I believe that President Biden will secure the overwhelming majority of Black support in November,” Jeffries told us.

— Mica Soellner

Presented by AARP

AARP knows older voters. 

We’ve made it our business to know what matters to people 50 and over—like we know that protecting Social Security and supporting family caregivers are among their top priorities. Learn more from our polling in Pennsylvania.

Editorial photos provided by Getty Images. Political ads courtesy of AdImpact.