Former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin plays key role in Democratic platform

By Maria Saporta

Former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin took pride in how the Democratic

National Convention’s Platform Committee was able to find a progressive compromise between the party’s two top candidates – former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Franklin served as the co-chair of the Platform Committee along with another former mayor – Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy. They spent several long days hammering out different elements of the Democratic Platform, including an agreement in support of a $15 minimum wage, a greater focus on the consequences of climate change as well as greater scrutiny of multi-lateral trade agreements.

Shirley Franklin Cecelia Hunter

Former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin at a roast in her honor in February. She is standing next to a close friend – Cecelia Corbin Hunter (Photo by Maria Saporta)

“The platform is better because of the rigorous campaign of both candidates,” Franklin said in a telephone conversation on Wednesday. “Bernie (Sanders) had a definite impact on the platform, and he brought a younger generation to the table.”

In releasing the platform, the Democratic National Convention described it as the “Most Progressive Platform in the Party’s History.”

According to the Convention’s website, Malloy was listed as being committed to Clinton while Franklin was listed as being “uncommitted.” She did not share her opinions about the race, choosing instead to talk about how the party was now unified behind one platform and one candidate.

“There was a lot of debate during the primary and during the committee that allowed us to adopt a unity platform that represents the diversity of the Democratic Party,” Franklin said.

From her point of view, Franklin acknowledged the whole process of negotiating the platform had taken a toll on her.

“It was tiring,” she said. “Today is the first day I feel like myself.”


Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.

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