Tom Perez and the DNC have got some nerve to sit Stacey Abams at the head of the kid’s table, burying one of the most impressive, accomplished and recognizable Black women in America at the end of a so-called “keynote” video that used local leaders to highlight the party’s supposed diversity without giving those leaders any real time to actually present themselves, and that aired at 9 PM on Tuesday — an hour before the networks start airing the convention.
Sure, the party wants to highlight the ones to watch in the years ahead. Many of the local leaders many Americans saw — “met” would be too strong a word for the 5 to 15 second cuts from pol to pol, like a nerdier version of the celebrity “Imagine” video — for the first time tonight will hopefully go on to truly lead the Democratic party and push it forward on progressive issues that should be the foundation of our democratic and Democratic future.
But leaving Abrams two minutes at the end of this montage wasn’t a way to showcase a star in the party but a way to put her back in her place—to make plain that she’s not part of the party’s leadership now. Even as the 77-year-old Joe Biden offers himself as a “bridge” to a more diverse future, the sidelining of Abrams shows the party’s need for a real reckoning, not just on policy but also on how they prioritize Black female candidates, especially those in the south. From the Georgia governors race to the South Carolina senate primary all the way through the presidential primary, Democratic leadership is still clearly uncomfortable putting their full support behind non-white and non-male candidates.