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Reply #35: Sharpton's not as mad at Dean as he is mad at JJ and JJJ [View All]

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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-29-03 03:21 AM
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35. Sharpton's not as mad at Dean as he is mad at JJ and JJJ

Mr. Jackson's neutrality is no surprise to Democratic Party officials, who say they would not expect him to squander his leverage this early in the campaign season. But it is a setback to the two black candidates, the Rev. Al Sharpton and Carol Moseley Braun, who could benefit most from his support, analysts say.

His silence, combined with the decision of his son, Representative Jesse L. Jackson Jr., Democrat of Illinois, to support Howard Dean, has exacerbated tensions between him and Mr. Sharpton, people close to them say. Mr. Sharpton, after all, is casting himself as the new Jesse Jackson.

Mr. Sharpton was incensed this month when he heard that Representative Jackson was going on a South Carolina campaign trip with Dr. Dean. "I know I am being set up, sabotaged, they ain't got to say it," he said, at a church appearance, in oblique reference to that trip.

Even before Mr. Sharpton decided to run, there was tension between him and the elder Mr. Jackson. That has grown worse, say people close to both men, some of whom say they see an effort by Mr. Jackson to hold onto his leadership status.

Kevin Gray, who worked for Mr. Jackson's presidential campaign and advises Mr. Sharpton, said Mr. Jackson was unlikely to step aside for Mr. Sharpton. "Jesse has always said that you don't give up leadership, people have to take it," he said. "So Jesse is not going to hand over leadership of the black community to Al without a struggle."
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