Baltimore, MD — In response to an article written by Zoll, Rachel, “African-American Christians waver over vote,” in the Associated Press Sept. 16th 2012, Pastor Jamal Bryant would like to make it clear that he does not, nor has he ever discouraged voting in the African American community; on the contrary he has been very vocal about the importance and necessity of all eligible Americans to be informed of all the issues on the ballot, and the urgency for all to vote in the 2012 Presidential Election.
A small portion of a quote from a previous article was referenced, which led readers to believe Pastor Bryant discouraged voting in the upcoming election because of President Obama’s position on gay marriage. This is not the case. Please reference the full quote below:
“This is the first time in Black church history that I am aware of, that Black pastors have encouraged their parishioners not to vote. At the heart of controversy are pastors who preach subjects of same-sex marriage, of which I am also an opponent. I am against the President’s policy on the issue, but I am not against the President. There is a larger issue at stake facing the Black church and the Black community. I deal with the fact that we lead in foreclosure, we lead in unemployment, we lead in HIV and AIDS, we lead in the high school dropout rates, we lead in dying of incurable diseases. So there are a whole lot of other issues we have to discuss openly.”
“Bryant Issues Code Red.” Washington Informer 16 Aug. 2012
The president of the Empowerment Movement; a coalition of African American Clergy that has come together and formed a faith based voting initiative, Pastor Bryant and his fellow clergymen have registered over 100,500 new voters.