As Hillary Clinton assumes she has the African-American vote locked up ahead of Saturday’s South Carolina primary, Spike Lee has decided doing the right thing includes endorsing Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
Lee has been feeling the Bern for a while, telling Esquire in September, “I’m very intrigued by Bernie from Brooklyn. I want to get to know more about him. I’m excited about him.”
He compared Donald Trump’s rise to a 1957 Elia Kazan film. “That doesn’t surprise me,” he said of the billionaire’s political rise. “You should watch a film called A Face in the Crowd.”
The director released Chi-Raq, a film against street violence in Chicago, in December. The endorsement undercuts Hillary Clinton’s claim that Sanders plays fast-and-loose with gun laws and she’s the only candidate to confront violence within and against the African-American community.
Lee, who endorsed then-Sen. Obama in 2008, announced his Sanders endorsement today in a radio ad.
“Ninety-nine percent of Americans were affected by the Great Recession of 2008,” Lee says in the spot. “Many of you affected are listening to me right now. That’s why I am officially endorsing my main man Bernie Sanders. Bernie takes no money from corporations. Nada. Which means he is not on the take. And when Bernie gets into the White House, he will do the right thing.”
That’s, of course, a reference to Lee’s 1989 breakout film.
“How can we be sure?” Lee continues in his endorsement. “Bernie was at the March on Washington with Dr. King. He was arrested in Chicago for protesting segregation in Chicago’s public schools. He fought for wealth and education equality throughout his entire career. No flipping, no flopping. Enough talk. Time for action.”
The director admonishes South Carolina to “wake up.”