EXCLUSIVE: Jesse Jackson on Trump demand to open houses of worship, Biden interview comments

Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. is calling on people, especially religious leaders, not to follow through on President Donald Trump’s demand for churches and houses of worship to start reopening over Memorial Day weekend.

“To go to church or Sunday mass is an act of defiance, not an act of worship,” Jackson told WTOP’s Ken Duffy.

Trump on Friday asked governors to allow the reopening of places of worship, calling them “essential” and to “open them right now.”

The president also threatened state leaders that if they don’t follow through on his demand, he will “override the governors.”

Jackson, founder of the civil rights nonprofit Rainbow/PUSH coalition, believes that attendees who want to go out and worship should stay home until the threat of COVID-19 is over.

Jackson called on religious leaders and worshippers to “lead the way” and continue to obey coronavirus restrictions and social distancing measures.

“The virus does not have religion,” Jackson said. “It has no regard for your situation.”


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Jackson also weighed in on the controversy facing former Vice President and presumptive 2020 Democratic nominee Joe Biden after comments he made during an interview Friday morning.

On a livestream of “The Breakfast Club” radio show, Biden told the host that African-American voters “ain’t black” if they’re thinking about voting for Trump.

Biden is now apologizing saying he shouldn’t have been so “cavalier” and “a wise guy.”

“It’s just absurd,” Jackson said. “Biden should be aware of these slip-ups. They can be detrimental.”

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