In her continued quest to win African American voters, Hillary Clinton met with a unique group of black mothers at a campaign event in South Carolina on Tuesday.
The mothers all had children die from police brutality. In attendance, at a town hall meeting at Central Baptist Church in Columbia, were Sybrina Fulton (Trayvon Martin), Geneva Reed-Veal (Sandra Bland), Gwen Carr (Eric Garner), and Maria Hamilton (Dontre Hamilton).
Clinton first met with the group a year ago, and the mothers plan to host engagements several more times on Clinton’s behalf in South Carolina over the next several days. Many believe the group is key to helping Hillary win over the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
“Secretary Clinton was the first to even mention Black Lives Matter,” said Sybrina Fulton, the mother of shooting victim Trayvon Martin, “and she was the first to reach out to us to even show she cared.”
On Wednesday, Clinton gave an emotional response to SiriusXM’s Joe Madison about meeting with the mothers, and why the country needs to end “the epidemic of gun violence.”
Clinton said in part:“Hard to hold back the tears” when talking with mothers of the victims of police violence:
…as a mother and a grandmother it’s something that really affected me so deeply over the last few years….I have reached out and have had the great privilege of meeting with a lot of the mothers in Chicago some months ago, just to hear their stories. There was no press there…I just wanted to hear them. They came with pictures of their children, with stories any mother would tell about their son or their daughter. I’ve stayed in touch with them. I’ve tried to support them in their efforts to turn their mourning into a movement and their sorrow into a strategy because we have to end this.
Yesterday in Columbia we had an event at Central Baptist Church with five of the mothers…and, I tell you, it was hard to hold back the tears. A lot of people in the audience were not holding back because you hear these stories and the women themselves are so powerful, so courageous, and I am grateful for their help. I know it is something they’re doing because they want me to do everything I can working with them to try to end this epidemic of gun violence and to try to reform and change the practices. And I intend to do everything I can to bring that about.”
Listen for yourself: