Rangel Warns of ‘Racial Polarization’ If Cuomo Challenges Paterson for Governor in Primary

Kenneth Lovett, New York Daily News, June 6, 2009

Rep. Charles Rangel Friday warned of “racial polarization” if Attorney General Andrew Cuomo challenges Gov. Paterson in a primary next year.

Rangel, who is close to the poll-challenged Paterson, ripped Cuomo on New York 1 last night for flatly not ruling out a run for governor next year.

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Should Cuomo run, Rangel said, it would create a divide that could be “devastating” to New York Democrats.

“I think that there might be an inclination for racial polarization in a primary in the state of New York,” Rangel said.

“Since we have most African-Americans registered as Democrats, and since you would be making an appeal for Democrats, it would be devastating in my opinion.”

{snip}

Cuomo stirred the ire of black leaders in 2002, when he mounted a primary challenge against Carl McCall, who was looking to become the state’s first black governor.

Cuomo wound up pulling out days before the contest and spent the next several years rebuilding his relationship with the party.

A number of Democrats don’t believe there will be a primary. They say if Paterson’s poll numbers, which are at historic lows, don’t improve, he might simply step aside.

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Rangel also knocked President Obama for getting involved in the U.S. Senate race by asking Rep. Steve Israel (D-L.I.) not to challenge Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.

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Rep. Charles Rangel warns of “racial polarization” if Attorney General Andrew Cuomo challenges Gov. Paterson in a primary next year.

“Since we have most African-Americans registered as Democrats, and since you would be making an appeal for Democrats, it would be devastating, in my opinion,” said Rangel.

This shot comes from someone who, last we checked, is black–yet who pulled out all stops for Hillary Clinton in battling for the Democratic nomination against the man who became the first black President.

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But now, Rangel portrays black voters as racially programmed automatons. Which they are not.

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Rangel, fresh off welcoming President Obama to New York by joking about how black men are likely to get shot by police, is increasingly looking like a dinosaur in the Land of the Lost when it comes to race relations.

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