What Happened Nikki?

After receiving several emails and calls on Nikki Tinker's recent ads I feel inclined to express my view on this issue. I have known Nikki for a few years now. I've found her to be a caring and kind individual. I have always been supportive of people, especially African Americans who have struggled against adversity and found their place and success in society.

In her first bid for office two years ago I enthusiastic endorsed her. I joined her campaign and stood out in the heat waving a Tinker sign. When “WE” lost I was hurt, but proud of how hard this young lady had fought. Flash forward to the 2008 race. Nikki’s mother, and number one booster, came by my office. She asked if I would be endorsing her daughter. Things had changed since the last time Nikki ran. Cohen had weathered several storms from belligerent ministers to what Herenton would call haters and he had handled himself very well. I had grown to respect his leadership and commitment to the community which is something I had said to him on several occasions. Now here I was torn between someone I proudly called my friend and someone I proudly called my Congressman. As a friend I provided a contribution to Nikki’s campaign, much smaller than I had in her first race. As a friend I offered her encouragement and my best wishes, but all the while wrestling with who I was going to vote for. This truly was a battle between my heart and my head.

When early voting started I found myself no closer to a decision. In debates with Cohen it was clear Nikki was lacking. Then Nikki’s ads started to turn negative, VERY NEGATIVE. I was shocked and appalled. This type of mud slinging was disgraceful. It was all the more shocking since Nikki and I had spoken about my race for City Council and how I was put off by all the tricks and lies. Nikki agreed and I could see she was a person that was above this sort of thing. Anyone who knows Steve Cohen knows this gentleman has the highest respect for African American and that his opinions are based on principal not politics.

I’ve seen good candidates loose sight of the reason they were running for office. The thought of loosing was too much to handle. This must have happened to Ms. Tinker and due to this, today I casted my vote for Congressman Steve Cohen and I ask you to do the same.

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