Weiner's new strategy: Play on voters' sympathies

With a little more than a month to go before the Democratic primary, Weiner’s David-versus-Goliath campaign narrative seems to be gaining some traction with African-American voters. The Quinnipiac poll showed that likely black voters were more willing to give Weiner the benefit of the doubt—52% thought he should drop out of the race compared with 64% of white voters. And 24% of black voters said they would vote for Weiner compared with 16% of the total number of likely Democratic voters.

At a campaign forum in Queens last week, a largely African-American audience booed when Republican candidate George McDonald called Weiner a “self-pleasuring freak,” according to a report from The New York Times. And over the weekend, Weiner was “mobbed” like a celebrity by mostly black supporters at the Jamaica Arts and Music Summer festival in Jamaica, Queens, according to the New York Daily News.

“Anthony is playing to that to a certain degree, saying I’m just like you, I’m an underdog too and some can identify with that because that syndrome is so deep in our community,” says Herb Boyd, a reporter for the New York Amsterdam News and a professor of Black Studies at the City College of New York.