1976: Major reforms give primary voters more power than ever in choosing the Democratic presidential nominee. But barely a decade after the Voting Rights Act, millions of black Americans remain unregistered. https://nbcnews.to/2K9DQbM (2/11)
1980: Black political leaders’ divide over the Carter-Kennedy battle gives way to a consensus that they are being ignored by both candidates — and a resolve not to let it happen again. https://nbcnews.to/2YcIfoh (3/11)
1984: Many black leaders plead with Jesse Jackson not to run for president, convinced his campaign will harm their cause. He defies them and then defies expectations in a campaign that radically expands the role of black voters in national politics. https://nbcnews.to/2SLFlAM (4/11)
1988: 4 years after his breakthrough campaign, Jesse Jackson tries again, this time with the aim of winning not just black voters but also whites — and the Democratic nomination. https://nbcnews.to/2YwlDKN (5/11)
1992: A tight Democratic race turns into a blowout when black voters side overwhelmingly with Bill Clinton, whose only black opponent drops out before a single vote is cast. https://nbcnews.to/2YrvBwL (6/11)
2000: The Clinton era ends with two white Democrats vying to succeed him — and with black voters siding with the president’s choice. https://nbcnews.to/2K05DfY (7/11)
2004: The South Carolina primary is designated as a crucial early test for the first time, and 2 black candidates step forward to run. But it’s one of their white opponents who wins a majority of the black vote, and the nomination. https://nbcnews.to/2Kaba2b (8/11)
2008: For months, polls show Hillary Clinton running at least even with Barack Obama with black voters, and far ahead overall. But when Obama upsets her in Iowa, it all changes. https://nbcnews.to/30ZpCAY (9/11)
2016: The dire predictions from 2008 of a permanently ruined relationship between the Clintons and black voters look laughable as Hillary Clinton crushes majorities over Bernie Sanders among African Americans. https://nbcnews.to/2KadBSD (10/11)
The data presented in this series covers, to the best of the author’s knowledge, every Democratic presidential primary exit poll conducted by national media organizations since 1976. https://nbcnews.to/2Ztimgc (11/11)
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