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Jesse Jackson Rainbow

Jesse Jackson Rainbow Political Button Museum
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Jesse Jackson Rainbow button back Political Button Museum
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Illustration of a rainbow on a black background with yellow text underneath

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In 1984 Jesse Jackson launched his presidential campaign, only the second time that an African American had launched a nationwide campaign for the position. Jackson, an Illinois reverend and activist, ran against Walter Mondale for the Democratic party’s nomination. Political pundits did not believe that Jackson could launch an effective campaign for the nomination, but he took third place, winning five primaries.

Jackson’s platform advocated a “Rainbow Coalition” made up of minority groups, inspiring this button, as well as a program for higher employment, de-escalating the War on Drugs, and higher taxation on the rich. Ultimately, Walter Mondale won the Democratic nomination and went on to run unsuccessfully against Ronald Reagan. Jesse Jackson continued to be active in politics, running again for the presidency in 1988, and merged the Rainbow Coalition with another organization called PUSH, which works towards social justice.

Jesse Jackson presidential campaign, 1984. (n.d.). Retrieved November 15, 2015 from:,_1984.

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