Speaking at a morning breakfast in Washington, D.C. on April 29, Democratic National Committee Chair Jamie Harrison addresses the goals of the party moving forward into the midterms.
Harrison, 46, began in the top role in the Democratic Party in January 2021 as President Biden began his first term in the White House. He was also chair of the South Carolina Democratic Party from 2013 to 2017.
“We are faced right now with an opposition in this country that is so far out of touch it’s kind of scary. They’ve got plans to raise taxes on half of Americans, threaten our health care and to end Social Security and health care as we know it,” Harrison said speaking to a large room of listeners that included mayors, their associates and local elected officials.
“They’re basically doing whatever they can to change the conversation and divide America,” Harrison said.
Harrison serves as the DNC chair at a time when political observers are assuming that the party in power in the White House and Congress will suffer losses in the midterms. Historic trends indicate this could happen for the 2022 midterms as well but detailed district by district analysis had many political observers cautious to bet against the Democrats.
Because the midterm elections are occurring two years after the last CENSUS count, redistricting is still being decided in several states. Harrison is presiding over the DNC at a particularly tumultuous time that has included a CENSUS, a historic pandemic that has killed over one million Americans and altered the economy, and a former president who sparked social and racial divisions in the U.S.
“We will not go back. We know that our cities and our nations are big enough for all of us. America is big enough and strong enough for all of us. But friends we cannot allow hate and division to win,” Harrison said to nods of agreement in the room.
The African American Mayors Association conference has featured hundreds of Black mayors from across the U.S. and has held events all week in Washington, D.C. The mayors have met with cabinet members and members of Congress over the last several days.
The next president of the African American Mayors Association will be Mayor Frank Scott of Little Rock, Arkansas. Scott is particularly focused on leadership positions that uplift the next generation of Black Americans and sounding the alarm on voting rights.
(Lauren Victoria Burke is an independent journalist and the host of the podcast BURKEFILE. She is a political analyst who appears regularly on #RolandMartinUnfiltered. She may be contacted at <LBurke007@gmail.com> and on twitter at @LVBurke.)