The battle for African-American celebrity backing and voters continues to be a major part of the Democratic nominating contest this week. And the Bernie Sanders campaign will start running radio ads today in South Carolina featuring another famous voice: Spike Lee.
“Waaaaake up! Wake up, South Carolina!” Lee begins in the new spot first obtained by ABC News from the Bernie Sanders campaign. “This is your dude, Spike Lee. And you know that I know that you know that the system is rigged! And for too long we’ve given our votes to corporate puppets. Sold the okie doke. Ninety-nine percent of Americans were hurt by the Great Recession of 2008, and many are still recovering.
“That’s why I am officially endorsing my brother, Bernie Sanders. Bernie takes no money from corporations. Nada. Which means he’s not on the tape, and when Bernie gets into the White House, he will do the right thing!” the actor, writer and film producer continues in the ad.
The line doubles as a reference to one of Lee’s best-known movies.
In the one-minute ad, Lee goes on to talk about Sanders' record fighting for civil rights, including his being arrested at the University of Chicago for protesting segregation and attending the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s march on Washington. Lee praises Sanders for his consistency on the issues.
Over the weekend, another famous African-American actor, Danny Glover, attended events in the South Carolina on Sanders' behalf as well. The state holds the next primary in the fight for the Democratic nomination on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton has used one of her backers, Morgan Freeman, and his famous voice in some of her ads.
In 2008, black voters made up 55 percent of Democratic voters in South Carolina. So far, this demographic has voted solidly for Hillary Clinton.
The Sanders campaign, trying now to mitigate a loss in the state, is hoping they will have at least a decent showing of African-American support there.