“This election is more important than the 2008 election for Barack Obama. This 2008 election is for change and for history. This election is for saving the United States,” Richards said. “Racial segregation is happening. We need people who are going to be leaders for everyone, not just their bases.”
Across the country, black voters are in large numbers. They say the stakes this year are particularly high, they say, and nothing beats their health and safety at the polls.
Many say this feels like the most important election of their lives.
Many black voters say they do not trust Trump
By spring, African-American voters are speeding up elections four years ago, when Hillary Clinton casts her ballot.
As of Tuesday, more than 601,000 Americans went to the polls earlier this year in Georgia, compared to about 286,240 two weeks before the 2016 election. In Maryland, 192,775 people went to the polls, compared to 18,430. And California has more than 303,145 – up from more than 106,360 two weeks before the election four years ago. That, according to Catalist, is an information company that provides analytics to democrats, academics and advocacy organizations.
Keith Green, 65, went to the polls last week in Overland Park, Kansas, to cast his own ballot – for a variety of reasons.
“We have too many racist presidents,” he said. He went on to say that he did not trust the Democrats. After all, I do not trust the Republican Party. ”
Several prominent Republicans, including South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott and Kentucky Attorney Daniel Jay Cameron, sang in his honor.
Green says the Trump administration worries him about the future of his daughter and two grandchildren. He believes Mr. Trump has praised white supremacists and set the nation on the path to civil rights and equality.
“The last four years have not been good,” he said. “We can not stand the next four years of that.”
Other concerns include health care and courtesy
Wilburn Wilkins, 61, woke up on the morning of Oct. 7, wearing two masks and heading to the polls in Joliet, Illinois, with his wife. Although the retiree has early conditions, he wants to vote for himself.
“We have a president who is undermining our entire democratic constitution,” Wilkins told CNN. “A lot of people are dying because he ignores the Covid epidemic, ignores the fact that people are unemployed, they need financial resources. We need change.”
Like Green, he believes the White House’s decisions have hurt blacks and other ethnic groups.
“The appointment of conservatives to the Supreme Court, the establishment of lower courts to enable cronies to practice conservative ideas, most likely to affect whites and browns,” said Wilkins. “They will affect things like civil rights, Obamacare – all of which have the potential to negatively impact minorities.”
Writer and author Nolan Williams Jr., 51, lives in Washington, DC, and plans to go to the polls on election day.
“For African Americans in this country, voting is the most effective way for us to influence the change we seek. The deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and the unrest that has taken place,” Williams said.
“Health care, legitimate housing, as well as equal access to housing loans, poverty, the environment, irreversible reforms to our justice system, and improved community policing are all issues that make this election significant,” he said.
Some voters do not believe after the 2018 election
Kee-Kee Osborne, 42, of Mableton, Georgia, said that was one of the reasons she voted for herself this month – to make sure her vote was counted.
“For me, the outcome of this election will be the difference between truth and deception, disgrace and disrepute, inclusion and misunderstanding,” said Osborne, who works as information technology manager.
“The words, actions, and policies of the current (Trump) administration have deepened the blackness of the past four years. It is imperative that our community be involved in the process because we have the opportunity to vote for change at all levels.”
“I want to make sure I get my own vote,” she said. “This election is very important for whites because current events such as the assassinations of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor (and) the spread of coronavirus have affected many whites,” she said. “This underscores the long-standing institutional inequality and racial inequality that exists in America.”
But for Gakere, the most important issue is access to health care under the Affordable Care Act.
“We have family members who meet the pre-requisite, and we feel there is a risk of being overthrown,” she said.
With election day in place, Wilkins has a message for voters.