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Bernie Sanders picks Cornel West to help write Democratic platform

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15 people will have the job of drafting the Democratic Party's 2016 platform. Bernie Sanders' campaign picked 5 of them (a highly unusual amount of influence for a candidate who's unlikely to win the nomination). Among his picks: public intellectual and political critic Cornel West.

The pick is only surprising to those who think of "black voters" as a monolith, and assume that (imaginary) monolith is solidly in the Democratic column. That's exactly the sort of lazy thinking that West, and other black intellectuals who've endorsed and are campaigning with Bernie Sanders, are trying to break people of.

As West and company see it, the fact that black voters reliably support Democrats isn't necessarily born out of contentedness or even by choice. To them, the Democratic Party, and the middle-class black establishment that supports it, has coasted for far too long on empty gestures to black voters, and on the uncomforting fact that they have nowhere to go. As Hillary Clinton's been praised for her outreach to black voters in 2016, these intellectuals see it as proof that the cycle's simply repeating itself.

Read entire article at Vox