Project 21, an activist group sponsored by the National Center for Public Policy Research, urged the NAACP to withdraw its Image Awards nomination of the “Empire” star because he was indicted on 16 felony counts this month. He’s accused of lying to police about being the victim of a racist and homophobic hate crime.
Smollett was nominated in the outstanding supporting actor in a drama series category. The nominations were announced more than two weeks after Smollett’s alleged attack happened.
“Everyone has a reason to be disappointed with Jussie Smollett right now, and these accumulated reasons justify the NAACP taking swift and appropriate action to remove him from consideration for its Image Award,” Project 21 Co-Chairman Council Nedd said in a statement. “Smollett is charged with perpetrating a hate crime hoax that wasted valuable police resources and stoked racial tensions nationwide. It hurt our nation’s ability to heal its racial wounds and made the NAACP’s civil rights goals harder to achieve. The NAACP needs to make it clear that his behavior is not OK by removing him from contention for an Image Award.”
Meanwhile, Trump’s latest legal troubles have come from New York Attorney General Letitia James, who issued subpoenas on March 11 to Deutsche Bank and Investors Bank to obtain records related to the financing of four major Trump Organization projects and a failed effort to buy the Buffalo Bills.
James said she wanted a range of documents that include loan applications, mortgages, lines of credit and other financing transactions in connection with the Trump International Hotel in Washington. Congressional testimony last month from Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen prompted this new investigation.
Yet, the probe into the president’s wide-ranging alleged misconduct that borders on treason was somehow missing from Project 21’s very user-unfriendly website. As a reminder, Trump is the central figure in an ongoing investigation that has so far resulted in multiple indictments and several convictions of people surrounding him by Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
On Jan. 29, while walking to a subway, Smollett claimed two men yelled racial and homophobic slurs at him, investigators told The Hollywood Reporter. They allegedly punched and poured bleach on him while one of the suspects put a rope around his neck. As they fled the scene, Smollett told police they said, “This is MAGA country.”