Yesterday, I moderated the Power of the Sister Vote post-election briefing. I will post a report of the event in the coming days.
Right now, I want to share one of the takeaways: Show black women the money.
The defunding of black voter empowerment and election protection groups remains a sore point. I asked the panelists whether they had been invited to attend the meeting of the Democracy Alliance.
The silence was deafening.
Democracy Alliance is a group of major donors whose mission is to “build progressive infrastructure that could help counter the well-funded and sophisticated conservative apparatus in the areas of civic engagement, leadership, media, and ideas.”
It bears repeating that black voter empowerment groups, most of which are led by black women, are responsible for closing the racial gap in voter registration and turnout.
As Rep. Barbara Lee, chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, observed:
We never would have come this far without black women.
A new report by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, “Blacks and the 2010 Midterms: A Preliminary Analysis,” found that “the black vote in 2010 was three-to-two female to male as has been the case in many recent elections” (emphasis added).
So, you can imagine my dismay when I read the Democracy Alliance reportedly is looking to “shuffle funds into a progressive infrastructure that will take on the tasks that the president can’t or won’t take on.”
People are determined to help build a progressive infrastructure and make sure it is there not just in the months ahead but one that will last in the long term. Instead of being pushed over by this election it has empowered people to stand up in a bigger way.
Black women are also empowered. They will not be pushed aside or settle for scraps. Instead, they will demand a seat at the table.
Major donors must be mindful that no Democrat -- progressive, moderate or the flavor of the month -- can win without the support of black women voters.
That’s the sisters’ bottom line.