Interview with Willie Felder
QUESTION 12
SAM POLLARD:

Let's, let's go to, ah, t- to Sunday. This was the last day of the convention.

WILLIE FELDER:

Yes.

SAM POLLARD:

And, ah, Coleman had just spoken. What, describe the Michigan walkout and what precipitated, I mean, what happened after Coleman had spoken to, ah, to the delegation?

WILLIE FELDER:

Coleman's speech to the--



SAM POLLARD:

We're at, we're on, we're Su- we're at Sunday now, it's Sunday, the last day of the delegation, of the, ah, convention. Coleman makes his last effort, appeal to Baraka, you know, to get them to listen to the Michigan delegation, people who were pro-labor. What was, what was Baraka's reaction to Coleman's statement, and what did you do, how did you react to this?

WILLIE FELDER:

Coleman's statement was presented, I thought, in eloquent form, and I was across the hall, across the assembly hall to the Alabama delegation, who had yielded to Michigan in order for Coleman to get to present, ah, the Michigan's, ah, ah, feelings and desires. And, ah, before I could get all the way back to the Michigan delegation, after Coleman made such an eloquent appeal, ah, there were three persons on the platform, in the name of the Congressman Diggs and Hatcher, as I recall, and Baraka. But Baraka abruptly rebuffed any appeal or suggestion from Coleman that consideration be given, and, ah, the UAW delegation, as I indicated earlier, which is 65% or better, and most of them are very, very acquainted with the rules and procedures of running meetings and, and having had their spokesperson attempt to represent their feelings and desires and having been abruptly rebuffed, and there was no recourse except for those who felt very strongly about it to do what they had to do, and that's walk. You know, there was no, ah, no drum-beating, or anything of that sort. We, they, they just quietly got up and moved out. And of course, the whole assembly knew that Michigan was walking because that whole discussion had been going on ever since we had arrived there, and there was much effort made to avoid it, and I certainly don't think that Coleman or Jack Edwards intended to just go there with the intention of walking away from it.