BREAKING: Kamala Harris Will Participate in Criminal Justice Forum After Sponsor That Awarded Trump Is Removed
California Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris is back on the schedule at a criminal justice forum after the event dropped the sponsor that gave President Donald Trump an award on Friday.
On Friday night, Senator Harris announced she was pulling out of the Second Step Presidential Justice Forum at Benedict College — a historically black college (HBCU) — citing Trump’s history of “racist behavior” and the exclusion of all but seven students from an event at which Trump was honored.
That move drew an attack from Trump and a counterattack from Harris. But on Saturday afternoon, the Harris campaign announced that Senator Harris is back on the schedule because the sponsor that awarded Trump has been removed from the event (statement via email from the Harris Campaign):
After Group That Awarded Trump Is Removed As Sponsor, Kamala Harris To Join Mayor Steve Benjamin and Benedict College Students for Forum
Harris’ Decision to Protest Forum Led To Increased HBCU Student Participation and Removal of Sponsor That Awarded Trump
After the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center was removed as a sponsor for the criminal justice forum at Benedict College in response to her protests of the event, Senator Kamala Harris is announcing she will join students, Mayor Steve Benjamin and the broader Columbia community on campus at Benedict to discuss critical issues for the country’s justice system.
“I am excited to welcome presidential candidates to a criminal justice forum dialogue which will allow Benedict College students and the wider community to have full participation,” said Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin. “I want to be clear that the Candidate Forums are hosted by myself and Benedict College. This portion of the weekend is not a 20/20 Presidential Justice Center event.”
Harris announced yesterday she would not participate in the event after hearing the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center excluded students from participating and gave Trump, who has spent decades exhibiting racist behavior and promoting injustice for African Americans, a justice award. Harris instead planned to host a separate forum on important justice issues in protest of this group’s involvement and the exclusion of HBCU student participation in the event. As a result of her leadership, the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center has been dropped from the event, the event was made free and open to the public, and more HBCU students at Benedict have been included in the event. Because of these important changes, Harris will now participate in the conversation with Benjamin, Benedict and its students, and the broader Columbia community.
Prior to this announcement, Senator Harris had planned her own separate criminal justice roundtable. You can watch the Second Step Presidential Justice Forum live here.