Book: Obama Has ‘Close to Zero’ Patience for ‘Professional Blacks’

Matthew Boyle, Breitbart, November 7, 2013

The new book Double Down: Game Change 2012 claims President Barack Obama does not have “patience” for what his advisors say he calls “professional blacks.” The book also says Obama dislikes the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) as much as he despises the Tea Party movement.

“Obama had little patience for the ‘professional left,’ and vanishingly close to zero for what one of his senior African American aides, Michael Strautmanis, referred to as ‘professional blacks’ (as opposed to black professionals),” authors Mark Halperin and John Heilemann wrote on page 39 of the book. “Apart from Georgia congressman John Lewis and Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, Obama had nearly as much contempt for the CBC as he did for the Tea Party Caucus.”

“New York’s Charlie Rangel he derided as a hack; Jesse Jackson Sr. was effectively banned from the White House,” according to the authors. “Obama remembered all too well a conversation with [Cornel] West in 2009, in which the professor used the precious time to complain about his seating at the inauguration.”

The passage comes in a section that details the aftermath of the 2011 Budget Control Act. The debt ceiling grand bargain reached with House Speaker John Boehner ultimately resulted in the sequester. The time frame was during the summer of 2011, as Obama’s re-election campaign began to heat up and as Mitt Romney was emerging as the Republican nominee to face off against him the following year. At that time, many leftist organizations came after Obama, arguing he was not liberal enough for their tastes.


The authors cited several members of the “professional left” and “professional blacks” as having gotten under Obama’s skin because of their criticism of him.


Obama, according to the authors, has struggled with the left and the black community. “One day in the spring of 2011, as he sat with some staffers preparing for a speech to Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, Obama rattled off a list of his policies,” the authors note in the same passage. “Cracking down on predatory lending. Education reform. Student loan reform. Most important, health care reform. All with an outsize impact on African Americans. All achieved at a time when half of the GOP believed he’d been born in Kenya . Obama threw up his hands. ‘After all that,’ he said, ‘am I still not black enough?’”

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