In an effort to curry favor with white voters, Barack Obama is avoiding speaking about issues of concern to African-Americans and is speaking the language of Caucasian voters, says Ralph Nader.
According to The New York Sun, Nader charged, "There's only one thing different about Barack Obama when it comes to being a Democratic presidential candidate," the quadrennial third-party candidate told the Rocky Mountain News.
"He's half African-American. Whether that will make any difference, I don't know. I haven't heard him have a strong crackdown on economic exploitation in the ghettos . . . payday loans, predatory lending, asbestos, lead. What's keeping him from doing that? Is it because he wants to talk white? He doesn't want to appear like Jesse Jackson?"
Obama wants to avoid being seen as "another politically threatening African-American politician," Nader told the Denver newspaper. "He wants to appeal to white guilt. They love it. Whites just eat it up."
In a news conference, Obama called Nader's charge a publicity stunt. "Ralph Nader's trying to get attention,” Obama said. "I think it's a shame,” he said, adding that Nader's campaign "hasn't gotten any traction."
Obama said he has not avoided issues such as predatory lending and the housing crisis, as Nader claimed. "What's clear is Ralph Nader hasn't been paying attention to my speeches," he said.
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