Shani O. Hilton

DC Correspondent
Washington, D.C.

Shani O. Hilton is the Washington, D.C. correspondent for She covers the intersection of congressional and White House politics and racial justice. Shani also works as the associate editor of A native of central California, Shani earned a degree in journalism from Howard University. Her writing has appeared in The American Prospect,, The Root, and other publications. She also maintains a personal blog where she muses on pop culture, race, and feminism.

Shani tweets at @shani_o.

The Politicians of Color Who Stand to Win Mitt Romney's Veepstakes

In the race to fill out this year’s GOP presidential ticket, the most interesting options for vice presidential running mates are non-white guys.

Feds: Bias Against Transgender Employees Is Sex Discrimination

The Equal Opportunity Employment Commission says Mia Macy, a transgender federal employee, can in fact file a bias claim under Title VII after being denied a job her gender identity.

Mitt Romney's Dismal Racial Justice Track Record

Now that he’s the clear front-runner for the GOP nomination, we’re breaking down just where he stands on the issues that matter most to people of color.

Five Myths About Crime in Black America--and the Statistical Truths

Trayvon Martin’s killing stirred many debates about crime surrounding black men. It also kicked up many familiar misconceptions, like the idea that black-on-black crime is uniquely bad. Hatty Lee’s infographic breaks down the realities.

Where Will a Next Generation Emerge in Black Electoral Politics?

Four years ago youth of color–and African Americans in particular–played a larger role than they had in generations. Will that generation continue to vote, organize and even find their way into key campaign roles in such significant numbers?

The GOP Isn't the Only Party That Must Face Younger, Browner Nation

Young Democrats are urging the party to spend more time and resources on cultivating the leadership of young people of color.

The Auto Bailout Saved Michigan--If You Don't Count Black Workers

Mitt Romney and President Obama have slugged it out over the Detroit bailout. It’s clear at this point that the bailout revived the auto industry. But thus far, it’s not been enough to heal the most ailing part of Michigan’s economy: black employment.

How Economists Tally Unemployment--and Its Affect on the Black Jobless Rate

January saw a remarkable three-point drop in black joblessness. Economists are skeptical it’s real. But why? Put on your data nerd hat, because we’ve got the explanation.

What Drove a Sudden, Steep Drop in Black Unemployment? Nobody Knows

Black unemployment dropped a whopping 3 percent in January, fueled by hiring of black men. Economists who’ve tracked black joblessness are waiting for the other shoe to drop–was it a statistical quirk, or is there a jobs renaissance afoot in black America?

Young Activists Plot the Future of the LGBT Rights Movement

Over 2,000 people showed up at the annual Creating Change conference in Baltimore to talk about building an inclusive agenda for queer activists and allies.

Obama's Feeling His Power Lately. What Else Can He Do With It?

In 2012, President Obama has discovered the power of his office–he’s taken three big executive actions that are just the sort justice advocates have been begging for all along. What else could he do before Election Day?

The Dirtiest of Words on Capitol Hill: "Racism"

Shani O. Hilton searches the words that members of Congress use as stand-ins for frank conversations about race, and finds some interesting trends.

Why (Very White) Iowa and New Hampshire Mean So Much in Politics

Both Democrats and Republicans put the bulk of their primary campaign efforts into states with largely white electorates. Meanwhile, voters of color seem like just an afterthought in the process.

What Congress Could Do on Jobs, While Hiding Behind Locked Doors

Several lawmakes literally hid from thousands who swarmed the Capitol this week to demand action on jobs. Here’s some of the actions they could have long ago taken.

Newt Gingrich's Decades-Old Policy Attack on Communities of Color

From welfare reform to the expansion of the nation’s prisons, the GOP frontrunner was the face of an onslaught of policies that disproportionately impacted black Americans.

The Super Committee Has Failed?! Wait, What's a Super Committee?

In Southeast D.C., where unemployment is close to 30 percent and where people are most likely to feel the pain of social service cuts, it’s enough to know the big picture: “They don’t seem to care about us.”

The White House Punts on Policies That Affect People of Color

Rather than supporting activists, it seems that the White House is simply gearing up for the election by attempting to protect itself from particularly liberal-friendly policies until the campaign is over.

Herman Cain's Break With Black Conservatism Gets Him White Support

Embattled GOP favorite Herman Cain has built his presidential campaign on being unapologetically rich, and black.

Rep. Keith Ellison Says Congress Can't Afford to Ignore Racial Profiling

The ACLU is promoting a bill called the End Racial Profiling Act to curb shady practices by law enforcement.

Herman Cain's Tax Plan is Falling Out of Favor With Voters

Conservatives prefer Rick Perry’s approach.