Ark. Democratic Party Accused of Excluding Black Female Candidate

by Andrew Johnson

An Arkansas Democratic gubernatorial candidate has filed a complaint against the state’s party for shutting her out and dismissing her candidacy, while promoting other candidates, including her opponent. Dr. Lynette Bryant, who is running against presumptive favorite former Representative Mike Ross, said she has been denied opportunities to take part in party events.

“They’re using Democratic money to push other candidates at the same time and my competitor,” she told KARK-TV. “They’re sending out email blasts like, ‘We have great candidates,’ but they do not put my name on it.”

She has filed complaints with the NAACP and the Democratic National Committee for “unfair treatment” by the Democratic Party of Arkansas​ as well as the Saline County Democratic Party​.​

On two separate occasions, Bryant, who is currently a substitute teacher, claims that Saline County’s party chairman snubbed her — first, by introducing Ross as “the next governor of Arkansas” at an event she also attended; second, by saying she could not speak at the party’s annual Jefferson Jackson Dinner.

The chairman reached out to KARK-TV, saying that Bryant is welcome to the dinner, but that she will not be given an opportunity to speak as the keynote speaker has already been selected.

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