15 September 2016
By Martin Slagter
ANN ARBOR, MI -- Emidio "Mimi" Soltysik was candid in explaining that
his presidential candidacy was less about putting himself out in front
than giving his supporters a voice while building community as the
Socialist Party nominee.
To back that claim up, Soltysik attempted to build community among
the approximately 20 people in attendance at his public speaking session
on Wednesday, Sept. 14, in the University of Michigan's Mason Hall by
getting to know his audience and supporters better.
"As opposed to (Vice Presidential candidate) Angela (Nicole Walker)
and I being the folks always front and center, we let people throughout
the country tell their stories – folks who have been involved in
organizing work, folks who are doing community work," he said. "They
tell their stories, they share their hopes and fears, and we share that
information and put that front and center."
Soltysik, a longtime political activist who is the first Socialist
Party presidential candidate named on Michigan's ballot since 2004, made
a concerted effort to listen to his audience, opening the evening by
asking everyone in attendance to name a book that changed their life.
Later in the evening he asked each audience member to explain what
community meant to them and to provide their definition of revolutionary