President Donald Trump talked about a plan that he says will help black communities bounce back economically from the COVID-19 pandemic during a visit to metro Atlanta on Friday afternoon.
The president held his Black economic empowerment rally at Cobb Galleria.
Recent polls show Trump is essentially tied with former Vice President Joe Biden in Georgia with 47% saying they would vote for each candidate.
Experts across the board agree that Trump can’t win the White House without winning Georgia.
Former University of Georgia football great Herschel Walker introduced Trump to about 300 mostly African American supporters Friday.
The president laid out his plan to help Black communities — something he’s calling his “platinum plan.”
[MORE: President Trump sees bump in Georgia following conventions, more undecided, Channel 2 poll finds]
“If you vote Republican, over the next four years, we will create 3 million jobs for the Black community, open 500,000 new Black-owned businesses, increase access to capital in the Black community by $500 billion,” Trump said.
When talking to some congressional candidates, he hinted that he expects legal disputes to come out of what is expected to be a close election.
“I know you’re going to be raising your hand. With me, we may end up in a dispute for a long time, because that’s the way they want it. But we’re going to end up winning, that’s for sure,” Trump said.
Earlier in the day, Georgia Democrats condemned Trump’s attempt to appeal to Black voters.
“Black Georgians know what’s at stake and we’re ready to send Donald Trump packing,” said state Sen. Nikema Williams.
Williams told Channel 2′s Richard Elliot that Trump’s failures to contain the coronavirus disproportionately hurt the African American community and his economic plan will only hurt, too.
“Donald Trump stands up for the people he wants to stand up for, and he’s just not standing up for Black Americans right now. And I have not seen him have a history of that,” Williams said.
Biden’s campaign released a statement Friday, saying:
“Black Georgians have been hit particularly hard by this crisis – 3,000 Black Georgians have died, 430,000 Black Georgians are uninsured, and 11.8% of Black Georgians have been left jobless. And, in the midst of this global health pandemic and economic crisis, President Trump is still working to tear down the Affordable Care Act and take away protections for Georgians with pre-existing conditions.”
Friday morning, the White House announced Vice President Mike Pence will be in metro Atlanta next week campaigning for the president, showing once again that Georgia is a battleground state in 2020.
“Georgia is more important to Donald Trump. There is not a real path to the White House with 270 electoral votes that doesn’t include a solid South, which includes Georgia and Florida,” Channel 2 political analyst Bill Crane said. “Joe Biden doesn’t have to win Georgia. Georgia would be sort of a bonus pick-up state and the 16 electoral votes.”
Crane told Channel 2′s Michael Seiden that the polls may be a bit misleading.
“If (Georgia) were in play, we would be bombarded right now by television and radio ads by both campaigns. We’re not,” Crane said.
Even still, he said both campaigns will have their eyes on the Atlanta suburbs.
“Right now, the battleground in Georgia is the northern suburbs of metro Atlanta and how this Supreme Court nomination process plays out. I have to think knowing of her, and not knowing her personally, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is doing a little bit of smiling down on us from heaven at the timing of all this,” Crane said.
With 39 days left until the election, Crane said a lot can still happen here in Georgia.
“Emotions like fear and anger drive voter decision(s), and behavior, and literally ballots are dropping in mailboxes as you and I are sitting here talking,” Crane said.