CBC Chair Has Blunt Words on Trump, Omarosa and HBCUs

CBC Chair Has Blunt Words on Trump, Omarosa and HBCUs


“They brought all those HBCUs to town. They took a picture in the Oval Office and then they did nothing.  If you look at President Trump’s budget he has a number of actions in it that actually hurt HBCUs,” said Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Cedric Richmond on August 21.

During a conference call with reporters to speak on President Donald Trump’s August 15 equivocations on white supremacy after a woman was murdered by one in Charlottesville, Va., on August 12, the Congressional Black Caucus Chairman had a few words on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) when asked about an upcoming conference in Washington, D.C. 

In response to a question on whether the CBC would participate in the annual White House driven HBCU week, an annual fly-in event for HBCU Presidents and advocates to discuss federal policy, the Black Caucus Chairman was blunt as he referred to the President’s inaction. 

“He still has a [HBCU] commission he still hasn’t named anyone to. Omarosa is still pretending to have influence with this President. I’m just surprised that she’s still there as an African American woman after his latest comments,” Richmond began.

White House Communications Director for the Office of Public Liaison, Omarosa Manigault is organizing the annual HBCU week conference for September 17-19 in Washington. Recent news reports have stated that several HBCU presidents are declining to particulate.

“I’m not surprised if many if not most of the college presidents declined to come,” Richmond continued.

“If they postpone it, great. If they cancel it, great. What I’d rather see, besides a conference and a fly-in day, is some substantive policies to help these schools with their scholarships, with their campuses, with their infrastructure,” Richmond added flatly.

“I don’t think you need a conference in DC in order to do that,” he continued.

“Not only do I think it should be postponed I think its should have never happened in the first place. This White House is not serious about improving our HBCUs, our institutions of advancement. HBCUs are the greatest equalizer in terms of income disparity.  That’s what HCBUs do,” the CBC Chair ended.

On February 22, over a hundred HBCU college presidents visited the White House on the day  an executive order was signing focus on HBCUs.  But an impromptu group photo event with over a hundred HBCU Presidents turned controversial as many students, faculty and alumni questioned why the advocates visited the White House only to exit with little more than a picture with Trump.   

The House returns to session on September 6 after the Labor Day holiday.

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Lauren Victoria Burke
Lauren Victoria Burke is a writer, comms strategist and political analyst. She created Crewof42, a blog focused on African American members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke also writes for NBC BLK, The Root, NNPA and is the Managing Editor of Politic365. As part of a diverse career in politics and media, she has served as a congressional staffer for the U.S. Senate Democratic Policy Committee, Communications Director for U.S. Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN) and Director of Communications for Justin Fairfax for Lt. Governor of Virginia. From 2014 to 2017, Ms. Burke appeared each Monday on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin on TVOne. Ms. Burke holds a B.A. in History from The American University. She was born and raised in New York. Email: LBurke007@gmail.com. Twitter: @LVBurke. IG: @laurenvburke. Periscope: @LVBurke