With a clenched fist held high and the promise of a “movement of the people,” Chokwe Antar Lumumba asked the voters of Jackson, Mississippi, to elect him as their mayor in a race he pledged would lead to the transformation of a Deep South city in a deep-red state. Victory for his civil-rights-inspired, labor-backed campaign for economic and social justice would “send shock waves around the world,” said the 34-year-old human-rights lawyer as he vowed to make Jackson “the most progressive city in the country.”
Too radical? Too bold? Not at all. Backed by a coalition that included veteran activists who fought segregation, along with newcomers who got their first taste of politics in Bernie Sanders’s 2016 presidential campaign, Lumumba won 55 percent of the vote in a May Democratic primary that saw him oust the centrist incumbent mayor and sweep past several other senior political figures in Mississippi’s largest city. A month later, he secured a stunning 93 percent of the vote in a general election that drew one of the highest turnouts the city has seen in years.
Read the full article at The Nation.