Clip of Bernie once using innocuous term ‘niggardly’ becomes political fodder in 2020 primary

Screengrab Twitter

The vetting of Sen. Bernie Sanders continues in earnest in the world of social media as we inch ever closer to Super Tuesday, which will likely prove to be a defining moment in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary.

On Friday, Bianca Delarosa shared a video of Sanders using the word “niggardly” at a 1986 gubernatorial debate in Vermont — this isn’t the first time the video has surfaced in this election cycle.

For what it’s worth, Delarosa is an avid supporter of Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., who dropped out of the Democratic primary in December.

“I am not going to be niggardly about funding for daycare,” Sanders is heard saying in the clip.

The video was circulated last year by Mediaite’s Tommy Christopher, who said of the term: “The word ‘niggardly’ is an obscure and arcane synonym for stingy that has no etymological link to the n-word.”

That assessment is accurate, and the n-word is now so repulsive in our society — save for some in the black community —  that the use of “niggardly” has practically become nonexistent just because it could be mistaken for a slur.

As we have learned by now, there is no room for error when it comes to avoiding being tagged as a racist.

Christopher shared the tweet he posted in March 2019, suggesting the same thing said in the tweet above, that the term “stingy” would do just as well.

Delarosa responded to the fall out to her earlier tweet to say: “Come tell my husband not to be so NIGGARDLY when I ask for money. I’ll be recording.”

She had also visited the issue back in January, encouraging Sanders supporters to record themselves as they work the term in while talking with a large group of black men.

Turns out, Bernie Sanders did use the n-word itself in a passage from his 1997 book, “Outsider in the House.” Twice. He encased the uncensored term in quotation marks each time.

Here’s a sampling of the responses to the story from Twitter:


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