Rev. Al Sharpton said Wednesday that black voters in South Carolina, which holds its Democratic presidential primary on Saturday, will not be deceived by red-baiting attacks on Sen. Bernie Sanders because “we’ve been down that road before.”
“Every major leader in the 60s they tried to call socialist or communist. Whatever you decide to do on Saturday, do not go by those that use the ‘socialist’ tag to try to separate us from what we need to do for this country.”
—Rev. Al Sharpton
“The civil rights movement always was targeted by those that would use the Red Scare,” Sharpton said at the South Carolina Ministers’ Breakfast in North Charleston as he introduced the Vermont senator.
Sanders and five other Democratic presidential hopefuls attended the event, which was hosted by the National Action Network.
“They accused Dr. King of being a communist,” Sharpton said. “Every major leader in the 60s they tried to call socialist or communist. Whatever you decide to do on Saturday, do not go by those that use the ‘socialist’ tag to try to separate us from what we need to do for this country… And we are not that stupid to allow you to tell us who is what.”
“Those of us that had to fight for the right to vote need to use that vote in a fair way, fair to those that fought for it,” added Sharpton, pointing to Sanders’ involvement in the civil rights movement in the 1960s. “One of them that came south to fight for that and was arrested was the senator from the state of Vermont, Senator Bernie Sanders.”