On Friday, September 25, hours before Donald Trump’s scheduled visit to Cobb County’s Cobb Galleria Centre, Georgia Democrats hosted a virtual press conference to discuss how Trump’s failed leadership has impacted Georgia’s Black community. Participants included DPG Chair Nikema Williams, State Sen. Emanuel Jones, State Sen. Lester Jackson, and House Democratic Caucus Chairman James Beverly.
Democratic Party of Georgia Chairwoman Nikema Williams:
“While Trump lied about the dangerous nature of COVID-19, Black and Brown communities have been on the front line of this pandemic for months, and we don’t let him get away with the consequences. It’s not just our lives that have been put at risk during this pandemic, we’ve also seen Black-owned businesses suffering unnecessarily, due to systemic racism in our financial lending institutions, with nearly 90% Black-owned businesses being shut out of relief programs.
“Folks in Georgia know that these issues don’t just arise because of the pandemic, these issues have been here, the virus has only put a spotlight on what has always existed in our communities, and our communities are at more risk than ever. With Justice Ginsburg’s death just last week, the Supreme Court is on the line, and with it, the key rights and protections that Americans depend upon. The Supreme Court will hear Trump’s attempt to tear down the Affordable Care Act, including pre-existing conditions protections, just one week after the election, the next Supreme Court justice could be deciding a vote on whether or not to let Americans still have protections for pre-existing conditions, including COVID-19 or cancer.
“Black Georgians won’t let this crisis get worse. We’ll do absolutely everything we can to make sure that we elect Democrats up and down the ballot to stop the Republican assaults on our rights, and protect our Democracy. Black Georgians know what’s at stake, and we’re ready to send Donald Trump packing.”
State Senator Emanuel Jones:
“Donald Trump wants to talk about economic empowerment, but he failed to get the coronavirus under control, so our economy is spiralling out of control. This failure to contain the coronavirus is costing us lives. It’s costing us jobs, too, and as a state senator I have seen Black Georgians in my district, and not just Black Georgians, but all Georgians in my district, struggle after losing their jobs and I’m outraged that this administration has failed to deliver the needed economic relief.
“We all know that Georgians can’t get back to work safely and that our economy won’t recover until he gets this coronavirus under control. But he still insists that in some kind of way it is just going to miraculously disappear. President Trump has given up on helping us. Under Trump’s failed administration, unemployment for Black Georgians has grown to almost 12%, more than double the average rate for white Georgians.
“Black Georgians aren’t fooled by this announcement today. We know better. We know that the economy won’t recover for working people until Trump is out of office.”
State Senator Lester Jackson:
“As a health care professional, I understand the effect this has had on the African American community, the Trump administration. He’s endangering health care coverage in the middle of this pandemic. Trump lied about the death impact of this virus. He’s lied about so much, but when you lie about the amount of deaths that have happened in this community, in the Black and Brown community, in the middle of a pandemic, it’s horrendous.
“Black Americans in Georgia are dying at three to four times higher rate than any other ethnic group. This is alarming in Georgia, especially when we represent 30% of Georgia’s population. 430,000 Black Georgians are without health insurance in the middle of this pandemic, after years of Republican failure to protect healthcare and a maternal mortality crisis. If Donald Trump gets his way, the Affordable Care Act will be repealed. It is time that we as a community stand up and elect Joe Biden as our president, so that we not only save lives, but we put forth a brighter future for all Georgians, for all Americans, and make sure that all Georgians are entitled to a quality health care service.”
Minister Trey Daniel:
“As someone who represents the faith community, as a faith leader, and someone who, more importantly, is an African American leader, I am here to talk about Donald Trump’s failures as a moral leader. From his time as president, we have seen over the course of his presidency that he is just not equipped to lead this country. From what happened with Charleston, in South Carolina, to what happened with Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Georgia Floyd, and more importantly, what’s happening with this COVID-19 pandemic, Donald Trump has shown that he does not represent this country morally well.
“Donald Trump is doing everything that he can to take away our health insurance. So I implore you, I beseech you, and I encourage you to get to the polls and vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.”
State Representative James Beverly:
“We all know that Donald Trump has failed Georgians. More specifically, he has failed Black Georgians, who have borne the brunt of this crisis. Throughout his administration, Donald Trump has tried to dismantle our health care, as said by my colleague, Lester Jackson. Well before the COVID-19 pandemic began, we realized that Trump was trying to dismantle the American health care system.
Four years ago, as you recall, Donald Trump said to us ‘What do you have to lose, by voting for me?’ Well I’ll tell you what we’ve lost. We’ve lost jobs, we’ve lost lives, and we’ve lost faith in an administration that has failed us.”