Why Stacey Abrams Will Give the Democrats’ Response to the SOTU

In which I solve yet another mystery

by baldilocks

The latest in the Democrat Party’s lowered expectations for People of Color™: now, they don’t even have to win an election for the party to choose him/her as its representative.

Stacey Abrams will deliver the response to President Donald Trump’s

Stacey Abrams

State of the Union address next week, giving the state’s top Democrat one of the nation’s most prominent pulpits as she considers whether to run for U.S. Senate in 2020.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said Tuesday he asked Abrams to deliver the address, which will air shortly after Trump finishes his address to a joint session of Congress next week, because “she has led the charge for voting rights, which is at the root of just about everything else.”

The speech will be a pivotal moment for Abrams, who narrowly lost last year’s gubernatorial race to Republican Brian Kemp and refused to formally concede the race, citing what she said was a vote marred by irregularities and his refusal to step down as the state’s top elections official.

Why Abrams? Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14), Rashida Tlaib (MI-13) and Ilhan Omar (MN-5) seem like better choices on the surface – they’ve actually won elections and all three allow the party to check the same two boxes that Abrams does: not-white women. Tlaib and Omar, of course, give the added benefit of being Muslims. (In fairness, Tlaib is only kinda Muslim.)

All that precious diversity at their fingertips but they forgo it?

It’s easy to see why none of them were chosen, though: no one will be able to control what they say in front of a national audience, especially not Nancy Pelosi. It’s entertaining to imagine Tlaib or Omar sign off with “Death to that Motherf****r Trump and to America” or Ocasio-Cortez with “God bless Socialist Utopia America.” Same thing, really.

And, call it a female hunch, but I bet each of them has told the Speaker of the House to her face that she can kiss their backsides or something equivalent.

Not that Abrams wouldn’t do that, too, were she in office. But she’s not and, therefore, she is much more apt to stay on the message outlined for her by the Speaker and by Senator Schumer. They need her, but she needs them much more. So, she gets the spotlight.

I’m sure that, during the response, the strings extending from her back will be well concealed.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

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