Henry says that while he was working for the Crist for Governor campaign in 2014, he caught wind of Taddeo offering her private thoughts on the ever fraught dynamics between the Democratic establishment and the black voters that make up an indispensable component of their base.
What she revealed, he says, wasn’t pretty.
Henry writes that following a pre-arranged powwow between Taddeo — on behalf of the Crist campaign — and leaders of the African-American community in Orlando, the then-lieutenant governor candidate let loose on what the author calls the FDP’s “black problem”:
“When she returned [from an interview], the crowd had long dispersed and only campaign workers remained. As she made strides toward the elevator to leave, she was asked of her thoughts regarding the meeting and if it was productive. Through a forced smile, she repeated an adage that’s been levied against black voters for years.
She said that black voters ‘bitched and complained with Obama, so why should we expect anything different?'”
If that’s true, Taddeo is all but sunk in her bid to return Florida’s 26th Congressional District back to the D column.
Now, we know there have always been self-serving actors that seek to sow racial discord among the Democrats in order to “divide and conquer.”
Leslie Wimes on behalf of the Pam Keith for Senate campaign, for instance, seems to be using Sunshine State News as a mouthpiece to stoke racial flames in order to gain attention for her candidate’s marginal also-ran-in-the-making campaign.
But, on the other hand, these kinds of attacks persist because many suspect there is a kernel of truth to them.
Taddeo was supposed to represent a fresh perspective, a multi-ethnic Miami pol above the old Southern-inflected fray.
But if Henry’s claims prove true, Taddeo’s 2016 candidacy looks about as likely to sweep South Florida as Rod Smith’s.