After Goldman questioned the electability of Black Candidates, Ben Jealous said he had never heard similar remarks about Black GOP candidates
Two months ago, a now-former Maryland Democratic party officer touched off a firestorm of controversy by questioning the electability of Black candidates in the state. Barbara Goldberg Goldman, Democrat State Party deputy treasurer, wrote in an email to party insiders, “Consider this: Three African-American males have run statewide for Governor and have lost. This is a fact we must not ignore.”[i]
It turns out Barbara Goldberg Goldman’s stay in the Maryland Democratic Party’s political Siberia has been very, very short. She hosts a fundraiser at her home for Attorney General candidate Rep. Anthony Brown on June 9. Along with an impressive list of co-hosts, her event’s “special guests,” include Senators Brian Feldman and Will Smith, and Montgomery County Councilmember Andrew Friedson.[ii] The event co-hosts pay $3,000, while sponsors contribute $1,000.
The Goldman email, sent last December, remained under wraps and unchallenged by its recipients until made public earlier in March by Alexi McCammond in an Axios piece “Democrats question electability of Black candidates.”[iii] The comments became news because, in addition to her Democratic State position, Goldberg Goldman is a key player in Democratic circles.
2018 Democratic nominee Ben Jealous emailed the Washington Post that the comments demonstrated that some leaders within the Democratic Party hold a different set of standards for Black and White candidates and are part of an effort to hold Black candidates back from succeeding.[iv]
Jealous told the Post that he thought it was notable that he has never heard anyone in the Republican Party make similar remarks about Black Republican candidates.
“I haven’t heard them say that about Michael Steele, about Boyd Rutherford. Our party needs to take a long look in the mirror and finally pull itself out from under the last remnants of the shadow of Chief Justice Taney.”
Regarding her Democratic State Party position, State Comptroller Franchot said Goldberg Goldman’s “decision to resign was necessary.” Within hours, and to the relief no doubt of the entire state Democratic establishment, Goldberg Goldman resigned.
Barbara Goldberg Goldman’s comments about African-American candidates were unquestionably offensive. However, political sins can apparently be forgiven with the right “Green” – as in campaign contributions.
[i] 2022-03-10-Sneak-email – DocumentCloud, https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21410828-2022-03-10-sneak-email