Georgia Democratic state Rep. Vernon Jones said he is resigning from his seat in the state Legislature and abandoning plans for re-election after coming under pressure for endorsing President Donald Trump.
Jones made headlines last week for bucking his party and becoming the first elected Democrat official in the state to back the president’s re-election. On Wednesday, April 22, he announced his resignation because of pressure and attacks he and his family were receiving from fellow Democrats.
“I’m sick and tired of me and my family being attacked and harassed by the Democrat Party for putting my country before my party. I take pride in being an independent thinker. My first amendment right to freedom of speech is under siege,” Jones said in a statement obtained by the CBS46.
Earlier today, I made the decision to not seek re-election to the Georgia House of Representatives.
I look forward, however, to continuing to serve my community in other ways and doing all I can to re-elect @realDonaldTrump.
We will Make America Great Again 🇺🇸
— Vernon Jones (@RepVernonJones) April 22, 2020
Jones staunchly defended his decision to endorse President Trump, saying, “I endorsed the White guy (Donald J. Trump) that let Blacks out of jail, and they endorsed the White guy (Joe Biden) that put Blacks in jail.”
Although leaving his office, Jones said he will remain “woke and vigilant in educating and fighting” for his community and hold the Democratic Party accountable and “get rid of its bigotry against Black people that are independent and conservative.”
Jones received harsh criticism just hours after announcing his endorsement for the president last week with the head of the state Democratic Party calling him an “embarrassment” to the party.
The lawmaker is not the only African American who was attacked for backing President Trump. Comedian Terrence K. Williams, a staunch supporter of the president, also said he recently has been inundated with death threats.
I TALKED TO THE FBI TODAY!
I have zero tolerance for death threats!
No one should be harmed for Supporting President Trump and for being a Free Thinker.
Calling me the N-WORD and threatening my life because I’m not a Democrat is just sickening!
— Terrence K. Williams (@w_terrence) April 23, 2020
Williams said he received death threats and is scared for his life after President Trump retweeted a video he made connecting former Secretary of State Hillary and former President Bill Clinton to the suicide of registered sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
“I never received deaths or had to watch my back in my entire life until I announced my support for President Trump. My first time being called the N-Word was by a white liberal.” Williams told the Daily Wire.
“I thought it was okay as an American citizen to support the President of the United States of America,” he added.
While President Trump captured just 8 percent of the black vote in 2016 elections, a recent poll released in April showed that the president earned a 19% job approval rating from black voters.