WASHINGTON -- In a display of institutional might, Hillary Clinton is rolling out a lengthy list of Georgia Democratic Party leaders backing her campaign for the presidency.
Shared first with the AJC, the list shows how Clinton has captured the support of the biggest names in Georgia Democratic politics, starting with civil rights hero and U.S. Rep. John Lewis. Clinton backers include Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, former Ambassador to the U.N. Andrew Young, state Democratic Party chairman DuBose Porter and a slew of Gold Dome leaders.
The push comes as Sen. Bernie Sanders continues to challenge Clinton atop the polls in Iowa and New Hampshire, the first two states to vote in next year's primary, and Vice President Joe Biden considers jumping in himself.
“As our former Secretary of State, Senator from New York, and first Lady of the United States, Hillary Clinton is the most qualified person to be President of the United States. I know her heart. We need her leadership, not just here in America, but all over the world. She is tireless in her advocacy for those who have been left out and left behind. She is ready to be President on day one. Hillary Clinton has my wholehearted endorsement, and I plan to work and campaign for her to see that she is elected the next President of the United States.”
Clinton's Georgia "Leadership Council" is an evolving list, according to the campaign, and will help build her Peach State organization ahead of the state's March 1 primary. It's another sign of her campaign's Southern firewall, as Clinton does better in states with high minority populations.
The list includes nine of Georgia's 13 "superdelegates," party leaders whose votes at the Democratic National Convention are not necessarily tied to how the state votes in the primary. Superdelegates, though, can switch sides, as Lewis moved from Clinton to Barack Obama in 2008.
Among Georgia's superdelegates who have not yet committed to Clinton: President Jimmy Carter and U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Albany. But Carter's grandson Jason, a former state senator who ran for governor last year, is backing Clinton.
In addition to Georgia, the Clinton campaign on Tuesday also released long lists of big-name supporters in Virginia, Minnesota and Colorado -- all states voting March 1. Sanders, too, is playing the long game beyond early primary states, as the Vermont senator raised nearly as much money as Clinton did in the last three months -- and appears to have spent far less, though the final numbers are not due in until next week.
Here is the full list of supporters, via the Clinton campaign:
· Former Ambassador to the UN Andrew Young
· US Representative John Lewis
· US Representative Hank Johnson
· US Representative David Scott
· Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed
· Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson
· House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams
· State Senator Horacena Tate
· State Senator Freddie Powell Sims
· State Senator Vincent Fort
· State Senator Nan Orrock
· State Representative Calvin Smyre
· State Representative Nikki Randall
· State Representative Virgil Fludd
· State Representative Carolyn Hughley
· State Representative Pedro Marin
· State Representative Howard Mosby
· State Representative Scott Holcomb
· State Representative Craig Gordon
· State Representative Stacey Evans
· State Representative Erica Thomas
· State Representative Simone Bell
· East Point Mayor Jannquell Peters
· DeKalb County Commissioner Mereda Johnson
· Rome City Commissioner Wendy Davis
· Atlanta City Council President Cesar Mitchell
· Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall
· Fulton County Chairman John Eaves
· Former Ambassador to Canada Gordon Giffin
· Former Attorney General Thurbert Baker
· Former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin
· Former Georgia Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond
· Former State Senator Jason Carter
· President of Georgia Association of Educations Dr. Sid Chapman
· Municipal County Clerk of Muscogee Vivan Bishop
· DNC Member Leslie Small
· DNC Member David Worley
· DNC Member Dan Halpern
· DNC Member Nikema Williams
· DNC Member Sally Rosser
· DNC Member DuBose Porter
· University of Georgia Student Leader Sharne Haywood
· Georgia Tech Student Leader Jake Orvis
· Georgia Perimeter College Leader Adam Smith
· Democratic Party of Georgia Disability Caucus Chair Vincent Olsziewski
· Community Leader Keith Mason
· Community Leader Molly Burke
· Community Leader Verna Cleveland
· Community Leader Pinney Allen
· Community Leader Seth Clark
· Community Leader Dr. John Hope Bryant
· Community Leader Andrea Young Thomas
· Community Leader Adrienne White
· Community Leader Otis Thrett
· Community Leader Hattie Dorsey
· Community Leader Stephanie Davis
· Constituency Director Ramone Rushing
· Grassroots Volunteer Leader DeUndre Eberhart
· Grassroots Volunteer Leader Jennifer Young
· Grassroots Volunteer Leader Joshua McNair
· Civil Rights Leader Henrietta Antonin
· Civil Rights Leader Lonnie King
· LGBT Advocate Glen Paul Freeman
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