JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Joe Biden campaign was in Jacksonville on Thursday with local leaders to discuss how they feel a Biden and Kamala Harris administration would build a better America.
Florida Democratic Party leaders said the events unfolding ahead of the November election should play a role in who voters choose at the polls —from the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to a decision by a Kentucky grand jury to not charge Louisville police in the death of Breonna Taylor.
“Breonna Taylor still did not get justice yesterday. I believe that if we had the right President in office, that situation would not be the way that it is,” said Florida Senate Minority leader Audrey Gibson, a Jacksonville Democrat.
Gibson was joined at the newly named James Weldon Johnson Park by Jacksonville City Councilman Garrett Dennis, State Representative-Elect Angie Nixon, and Duval Democratic Party Chair Daniel Henry, to assert that Trump’s failed leadership has negatively impacted Jacksonville’s Black community.
“Black and Brown communities have disproportionately been impacted by the public health and economic crisis caused by his mismanagement," Nixon said.
Early in the pandemic, studies showed members of the Black community were more likely to have pre-existing conditions and are less likely to have health insurance.
They said systemic racism, racial inequalities and community relations with the police are all key issues this election season.
In Duval County, there have protests and conversations about police budgets and Confederate monuments. But Gibson at the President Donald Trump’s event in Jacksonville Thursday night, she doesn’t think he will mention those efforts.
“He wants to deepen the racial divide," Gibson said. "He wants to make people believe that African-Americans and people of color are after them and that we are violent looters and create havoc in communities.”
Gibson said Biden has a plan to hold police officers accountable for wrongdoing.
“When it comes to racial inequality and how we can deal with things like Breonna Taylor happening never again, it’s him offering plans to stop no-knock warrants,” Gibson said. “It’s him offering plans to ensure officers I have a checkered history on police brutality have a national database so that would be the way they don’t go from agency to agency and perpetuate the same issues we see today.”
Biden also issued a statement to News4Jax ahead of Trump’s campaign visit:
Since President Trump’s last visit to Florida just two weeks ago, over 40,000 more Floridians have tested positive for coronavirus and the state marked 13,000 COVID-related deaths. Black Floridians in Duval County are being hit especially hard by this pandemic, where the number of cases is 2.6 times higher for Black residents than white residents, small businesses are struggling to keep their doors open, and families are reeling from the loss of loved ones. President Trump’s focus is not on ending this crisis, though; he’s instead fighting to get the U.S. Supreme Court to tear down the entire Affordable Care Act, including its protections for as many as 7.8 million Floridians with pre-existing conditions. If he succeeds, insurers could deny coverage for Floridians with lasting COVID-19 complications. President Trump does not have a plan, but I do — to beat COVID-19, build our economy back better, and protect and build upon the Affordable Care Act by giving Americans more choice, reducing health care costs, and making our health care system less complex to navigate.Presidential candidate Joe Biden