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February 10, 2016

Nutter: Sanders' comments on African-Americans 'slightly offensive'

Former Philly mayor stumping for Clinton on CNN

Former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter is taking full advantage of his new gig as a commentator for CNN to stump for longtime political ally Hillary Clinton.

During a recent on-air appearance, Nutter blasted Clinton's rival for the Democratic nomination, Bernie Sanders, in regards to the way the candidate spoke about minorities.

Nutter said Tuesday that the only time he's heard Sanders talk about African-Americans and Latinos was when he was speaking about jail or criminal justice, something he said he found "slightly offensive." Watch a video of his comments below (h/t Nick Vadala of

The ex-mayor's comments came after Sanders handily defeated Clinton in the New Hampshire primary. On Twitter, Nutter also echoed Clinton's claim that Sanders took money from Wall Street -- a seemingly hypocritical act considering Sanders' previous rhetoric -- and the senator's endorsement of a book that criticized the Obama administration.

Nutter's tweets are similar to other volleys lobbed at Sanders from the Clinton camp, and his comments on the candidate's ability to address race are reminiscent of an issue the senator's campaign ran into early on. Per Salon:

After being dogged early on during his campaign by complaints that he failed to adequately address the Black Lives Matter movement, Sanders hired an African-American activist to serve as a senior campaign spokesperson and added more explicit references to police brutality and racism in the criminal justice system to his stump speech, decoupling the message from his larger theme of income inequality.

Those explicit references are what Nutter is being critical of, and race figures to be a major factor in the South Carolina primary on Feb. 27.

Sanders may have gotten a boost in his credibility among African-American voters Wednesday when black writer and critic of the senator's opposition to reparations, Ta-Nehisi Coates, said he was voting for him, not Clinton.