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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Elaine Marshall Uses The Race Card Against Cal Cunningham "White Male"

Elaine Marshall's Aide: "White Male Can't Win"

North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall's Senate campaign is raising questions about her leading Democratic primary opponent's viability, suggesting that former state Sen. Cal Cunningham wouldn't be on solid general election footing "because he's a white male."

"Marshall's going to be the only candidate who's going to be competitive. She's won statewide," Marshall consultant Thomas Mills told POLITICO, continuing sarcastically:

"[Cunningham] can't win because he's a white male. He's going to have a good solid base, right"?

"All those young white male guys? Is that who he's bringing? He doesn't have a base."

Mills predicted Cunningham would strike out with Black voters in the primary fight, calling that a bad omen for the general election.

"If he gets two percent of the vote in the African American community in the Primary, I'd be shocked," said Mills, referring to Cunningham. "And if African Americans don't vote at 20 percent in the general, Democrats can't win in this state anyhow."

Cunningham spokeswoman Angela Guyadeen wouldn't respond directly to the Marshall campaign's charge, but said in a statement: "Cal Cunningham's campaign is focused on the key issue facing North Carolina: creating jobs and restoring our economy."

The two Democrats are competing for their party's nomination with Ken Lewis, an African-American attorney. The three face off in a vote next Tuesday, and if no candidate takes 40 percent of the vote they'll move to a June 22 runoff.

A SurveyUSA poll released this week showed Marshall clinging to a narrow edge over Cunningham, leading 23 percent to 19 percent, with 10 percent of the vote going to Lewis. But Cunningham, the preferred candidate of national Democrats, has been chipping away at Marshall's name identification advantage with a wave of television ads and he's the only candidate in the race to go on the air so far.

That's about to change. Marshall's going on television starting on Thursday with a 30-second spot that describes her as "the only Democrat for Senate with the experience and the guts to clean up the mess in Washington." Marshall campaign manager A.J. Carillo said the ad would run "mostly statewide, except for a few smaller markets."

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Sources: Politico, Wikipedia, Google Maps

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