In South Carolina’s Lowcountry, U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-California) has achieved cult status for her hyper-aggressive stance against President Donald Trump. She broadcasted her rebellious rhetoric during Orangeburg County’s annual Democratic Party Cook-off on Thursday.
Speaking directly to the largely black community, Waters characterized Trump as “the most despicable, dishonorable human being this country’s ever seen.”
The California Democrat has called for the president’s impeachment and turned a parliamentary phrase — “Reclaiming my time” — into a signature slogan after a combative congressional hearing with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.
Egged on by an eager crowd, Waters stated, “We don’t back down,” to a chorus of “amens.”
“We don’t walk away. We don’t give up. We’re not intimidated. They may have the numbers, but guess what? We’re reclaiming our time,” she preached.
Waters led a chant to “Impeach 45! Impeach 45!” and ranted against President Trump being in the White House, saying, “You don’t belong there, and we don’t intend for you to stay there. The fight is on!”
U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-Columbia) was pleased with the response. “This year feels much more upbeat than it’s been in a long time,” he said. “Democratic voters are incentivized by Trump. Now what we’ve got to do is harness that energy and deliver it to the polls on Election day.”
Orangeburg County Democratic chairman Betty Henderson noted that his year’s event was a much-needed way to “rejuvenate” complacent Democrats who sat back after Obama’s victory. “Now they know,” she said. “When you don’t vote, this is what happens.”
Democratic gubernatorial candidate James Smith was not at the event, due to restrictions for attending partisan events while on National Guard drill status, but he has been lauded as one of the rare Democrats who has the potential to both energize the base while offering crossover appeal to moderate voters.
Clyburn pointed to Smith’s combination of a progressive public service record with a strong military background, which includes a tour in Afghanistan, saying that these attributes will make him stand out.
“He has a tremendous record, not just with legislation but in the community at large and with his military service, which is key,” Clyburn said. “This is South Carolina after all.”
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