You may have heard that New York’s Biggest Loudmouth, Al Sharpton, is running for president. As a Democrat. Now, while there’s precisely zero chance that I would vote for him or suggest that anyone else should (Tawana Brawley, anyone?), I must say that I’m kind of looking forward to his campaign.
There are two kinds of candidacies. One kind is out to actually win. The other kind is to define issues and simply win a place at the table. No one really believes that the Rev. Al will win a blessed thing, but that’s not the point. Sharpton’s presence will have a revealing influence on the rest of the field’s — and the party’s — attitude toward racial issues. This may not be a good thing for Democrats, as it could well highlight a tendency toward pandering. But to the extent that that tendency does get highlighted, that’ll be a good thing for the electorate, and there’s always the possibility that Sharpton will actually effect positive change.
To be sure that as much light as possible gets thrown on Sharpton’s candidacy, the Hill reports, the documentary filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker (The War Room, Company) will be following the man around for the next year or so. Yes, I’d pay money to watch a Sharpton back room in action.