There will be no second meeting between the 49-member Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) and President Donald Trump.
On Wednesday, the CBC Tweeted its rejection to Trump’s invitation for a follow-up visit at the White House.
A letter from the CBC’s chairman, Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.), explains that the members voted to decline over “the lack of response to any of the many concerns we have raised with you and your administration.”
Richmond adds: “I fail to see how a social gathering would benefit the policies we advocate for.” He did, however, leave the door open for individual caucus members to meet with the president.
The letter states that the administration is on a policy path “that will affirmatively hurt Black communities,” and concerns the caucus raised at the first meeting in March “fell on deaf ears.”
Richmond underscores several policy areas that would devastate the Black community, including budget cuts, repeal of health care and the return of the Justice Department’s bias war on drugs that led to mass Black incarceration.
Following that initial White House gathering, the CBC released a 130-page policy document, titled “We Have a Lot to Lose: Solutions to Advance Black Families in the 21st Century,” in which the caucus offers policy solutions.
Trump adviser Omarosa Manigault, who extended the invitation for the follow-up meeting, said it’s disappointing that Richmond rejected the invitation. Manigault added that Trump wants to meet with individual caucus members who have reached out to her or to other White House staff, ABC News reported.
“We will do that because they have made those requests and we will honor those requests. That’s not going to be deterred because of Cedric Richmond’s political gamesmanship,” she told The Associated Press.
Manigault raised eyebrows among CBC members because she referred to herself as “The Honorable Omarosa Manigault” in the invitation, a title that’s usually reserved for high-level officials.