On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Selma march, Senate Democratic Minority Leader Harry Reid's endorsement of Representative Chris Van Hollen to replace Senator Barbara A. Mikulski in the 2016 election is outrageous and insulting.
"You've got some very strong potential candidates looking seriously at running," he said. "For Reid to come in and try to clear the field for a candidate is just wrong on so many levels. It is sensitive for those of us who are trying to diversify the country and the party."
Endorsing a fellow Democrat in leadership like Van Hollen neglects potential black candidates like Representative Donna Edwards (who just announced her run for the U.S. Senate) and former NAACP President Ben Jealous who are a mulling a run for the Maryland U.S. Senate in a state that has a 30% black population.
This type of behavior isn't acceptable and it isn't good enough. "That's how you perpetuate an unequal status quo," says Phillips. "If there is any interest in putting actions behind rhetoric and equality, he would just stay out."