By MEGHAN DE ST. AUBIN
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Georgia delegates express excitement over the first day of events, including Michelle Obama’s primetime speech and the vote for LGBT marriage equality.
Former Mayor of Atlanta, Shirley Franklin says she is excited for Michelle Obama’s speech this evening.
“She is an amazing draw and I’m very proud to call her First Lady. She’s smart, she’s committed, she’s funny, and she’s a caring mother and wife. She is a wonderful image of what American women are and can be,” says Franklin.
State Senator Horacena Tate (38th District, Fulton County) also hopes to make it down to Charlotte’s convention center to hear the First Lady speak tonight.
“Opening night is going to be very exciting to have the First Lady speak to us. It should be a really good evening,” says Tate.
Franklin, who is also chairman and CEO of non-profit organization, Purpose Built Communities, served on the credentials committee and says she is excited to get started on the rest of the work, which lies in the caucuses.
The breakfast Georgia delegates attended Monday morning was hectic as party officials attempted to supply everyone with the proper credentials. They broke the delegates up into teams of 10 to 15 people to ensure no one was lost in the shuffle.
Excitement is also in the air for the state’s delegates and the LGBT community because delegates will be voting this afternoon to place marriage equality into the Democratic Party’s platform. Franklin says she has stood for marriage equality for 20 years or more.
“I was privileged to be among the women who advocated for marriage equality in the state of Georgia in the early 2000s’,” says Franklin.
As for delegate Sandra W. Austin of Decatur, she says very simply, “I hope it passes.”
Franklin hopes the Democratic Party will stand with all Americans including those who identify as lesbian, gay or transgendered.