*Hillary Clinton’s campaign employs 38 Black women, and that’s more than any other presidential campaign in history — including more than both of President Obama’s campaigns in 2008 and 2012.
According to reports, the 38 women are stationed at her headquarters in downtown Brooklyn and work in various capacities, such as designers, accountants and senior policy advisers.
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NY Mag profiles one of these women, Maya Harris, sister to California senate hopeful Kamala Harris “and a political Goliath in her own right.” She arrived at the campaign in April, and she has written about the importance of women of color in future elections. The Stanford-trained lawyer and former university dean helps shape the policies Clinton relays in stump speeches and debates.
Via NY Mag:
When asked about the policies that would affect black women the most, Harris points to three main issues: the gender pay gap, support for small businesses, and criminal-justice reform. “When you talk about these things, they impact women of color in tremendous ways,” says Harris. “For example, an average women makes 80 cents on the dollar compared to white men. For African-American women it’s 63 cents on the dollar and for Latinas it’s 54 cents on the dollar. When you talk about ensuring equal pay for women, that will have a distinct and dramatic impact for women of color, for whom the wage gap is widest.”
Harris notes that African-American women make up the fastest growing sector within female entrepreneurship, and that the capital Clinton intends to make available if she were elected would help launch and grow their businesses. It’s a policy that will benefit everyone, but African-American women overwhelmingly so.
“Millennials don’t necessarily remember the Clinton administration in the ’90s in the way that you remember how much they attacked Hillary Clinton then,” notes Zerlina Maxwell, Hillary’s director of progressive media. “You know how we always talk about the concept of receipts? She has them — real, tangible working results that she’s worked toward to get for our community.”
Like Harris, Maxwell went to law school before immersing herself in politics. She was a field organizer during Obama’s 2008 campaign and her advocacy against sexual assault is well-documented. Her role in the Clinton campaign is to relay key campaign messages to “influencers,” such as popular feminists on social media, and she also pitches progressive media outlets for coverage.
“Being a black woman in this campaign, it’s a lot, especially given what’s going on all in the news with black people, and especially when you’re running against Donald Trump, which can sometimes be emotionally exhausting. But that just makes the work here more important.”
For more on the Black women working on Hillary Clinton’s campaign — which is “perceived as ambivalent at best and pernicious at worst” in terms of her relations with the black community — click here & check out the clip below.