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How 2020 Democrats are trying to connect with black voters

Most of the contenders for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination attended South Carolina Democratic Rep. Jim Clyburn’s weekend fish fry. Clyburn is the highest-ranking black member of Congress, and his event is perceived as critical for connecting with voters of color. Since then, several candidates released new policy proposals -- and yet another entered the race. Lisa Desjardins reports.

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  • Nick Schifrin:

    On the campaign trail today, Democrats proposed new policies ranging from student debt to veterans to immigration reform.

    As Lisa Desjardins reports, it all capped off a weekend spent appealing to voters of color.

  • Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.:

    We have a generation of people who are drowning in debt.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    An ambitious plan to forgive $1.6 trillion in student debt. Vermont Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders today unveiled new legislation that he says would pay off the loans of 45 million Americans by taxing Wall Street transactions.

    Also today, former Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke unveiled a plan of his own to boost funding for veterans health care by applying what he calls a war tax on wealthy non-military households.

  • Beto O’Rourke:

    We have to do much more for the veterans who have served this country.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    And in a Miami Herald op-ed, former Vice President Joe Biden outlined a broad vision for general immigration reform.

  • Joe Biden:

    So, folks, I'm here to tell you, I hope to be your nominee. I'm going to work as hard as I can.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    This weekend, Biden enjoyed a warm welcome in South Carolina, where polls show him at the top of the field. He and nearly every other 2020 Democratic candidate attended a must-visit fish fry hosted by Congressman Jim Clyburn, the highest ranking black lawmaker in Congress.

    South Carolina is key for two reasons. Sixty percent of Democrats in the state are black, and the state votes fourth in the primary race. It is a near must-win for California Senator Kamala Harris, who made it clear she wants to gain on Biden.

  • Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif.:

    Presidential Candidate: And I will tell you, I fully intend to win this election.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, who is gaining on Biden in South Carolina, also tried to stand out.

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.:

    I'm in this fight because I believe that the time for small ideas is over. We need big structural change!

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, after a week of public feuding with Biden over his remarks touting his past work with segregationist lawmakers, focused remarks on bringing the party and the country together.

  • Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J.:

    And so let's all dedicate ourselves in this election to making this about taking it back, not for elected, not for connected, but for the people of the United States of America.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    Absent, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who spent Sunday addressing an uproar in his hometown over the shooting of a black man, 54-year-old Eric Logan, by a white police officer.

  • Pete Buttigieg:

    We are here, first and foremost, because the city is hurting, because the city is in pain, because someone among our number died at the hands of another person.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    Buttigieg faced tense pushback from a majority black audience, some of whom said he was prioritizing his presidential bid over the city.

  • Woman:

    Do you understand? Get the people that are racist off the street.

  • Lisa Desjardins:

    Buttigieg said the nation must deal with systemic racism.

    Tough issues of race and inequality seem sure to stay with the crowded and still growing Democratic field. Former Pennsylvania Congressman and Navy Admiral Joe Sestak jumped into the race this weekend, bringing the total number of Democratic candidates to 24.

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