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Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter speaks at a Legislative Black Caucus press conference.

Black caucus blasts Trump over ‘go back’ tweet

Watson Coleman, Oliver take their own jabs

By Nikita Biryukov, July 23 2019 3:01 pm

Click play for audio version of this story

The Legislative Black Caucus raised alarms over President Donald Trump’s comments telling four non-white congresswomen to “go back” to where they came from Tuesday.

“It’s set off a chain of reactions from hate mongers feeling liberated to target people with malice and hate and tell them where to go. We stand united today here as sisters, and our brother Sen. Rice to let our president know that hate has no place in Washington nor here. We will not allow the hands of time to turn back,” Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter, vice chair of the LBC, said. “This bully, one bully, will not take our democracy.”

Earlier this month, Trump on Twitter asked why the four non-white progressive congresswomen — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) —  “don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”

The statements spurred waves of backlash that last week led to the House passing a resolution denouncing the comments as racist.

Assembly members Angela McKnight, Shanique Speight, Herb Conoway, Verlina Reynolds Jackson, Linda Carter, Cleopatra Tucker and Britnee timberlake also attended the event.

State Sens. Sandra Cunningham, Nia Gill, Ronald Rice and Teresa Ruiz made up the event’s senate cohort.

“We’re living in some really scary times right here. The president has affirmed for us this last week that he acknowledges, avows and speaks loudly of his racism,” said Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman, who joined the legislators Tuesday morning. “No matter how he tries to whiten it up, it’s still racism, and his racism that he has extolled brings silence from those who work with him, support him or are just darn scared of him.”

Watson Coleman, and the entirety of the House Democratic Caucus, voted the back the resolution censuring Trump.

That resolution, sponsored by Rep. Tom Malinowski, passed the House 240-187, earning backing from only four of the chamber’s Republican members.

“When the president of the United States of America says its ok to be racist, we have a serious problem. Not only are the lives of the squad in danger, but every single person in this country is in danger,”  Cunningham said. “The United States of America was created, built and is the country that it is now because of the diversity in this country. This was not built without people of all colors.”

Caucus members said more than once Tuesday that they feared for the lives of the four first-term congresswomen receiving the brunt of Trump’s attack.

That didn’t mellow their criticisms.

“We can laundry list for you all of the actions he has taken, and if he thinks the two idiotic women Silk and Diamond are representative of black women in this country, he’s going to learn a new lesson very quickly,” Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver said.

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