Trump to John Lewis: Fix your ‘horrible’ Atlanta district

Rep. John Lewis and President-elect Donald Trump. AP file.

Rep. John Lewis and President-elect Donald Trump. AP file.

President-elect Donald Trump labeled a congressional district that sweeps through the heart of Atlanta as a “crime infested” area that is in “horrible shape” in an early-morning tweet Saturday aimed at one of his most outspoken Democratic critics.

The Republican was unloading at Georgia Rep. John Lewis, who has represented the Atlanta district since his 1986 election, after the civil rights icon made national headlines when he told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he will skip Trump’s inauguration next week.

“Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results,” Trump said in a pair of Twitter messages ahead of the city’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebrations. “All talk, talk, talk – no action or results. Sad!”

Related: Politicians, pundits slam Trump for Lewis comments

Lewis told the program he believes in forgiveness but that he doesn’t think he can stomach Trump’s presidency.

“I believe in trying to work with people,” he said. “It will be hard. It’s going to be very difficult. I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president.”

Lewis also said he believes Russia President Vladimir Putin helped elect Trump.

Related: Pastor of MLK’s church: Trump is a ‘small man’ for attacking Atlanta

“I think it was a conspiracy on part of the Russians and others to help him get elected,” he told MSNBC. “That’s not right, that’s not right. That’s not fair. That’s not the open democratic process.”

Lewis has become one of the most vocal critics of Trump, vowing to resist his presidency. He testified this week against U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., Trump’s nominee to be attorney general, and has urged Democrats to unite against his policies.

Related: Georgia Republicans struggle to defend Trump’s attack on Lewis

His civil rights legacy gives him a prominent pulpit. He was chair of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in the early 1960s and led countless sit-ins and protests. An ally of King, Lewis was an architect of the March on Washington in August 1963 and was beaten so badly during the 1965 Selma to Montgomery march that his skull was fractured.


The Democrat’s district includes parts of Fulton, DeKalb and Clayton counties – and most of the city of Atlanta – as well as Brookhaven, College Park, Decatur and Morrow. The district has several of Atlanta’s most prominent gems, including Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the King Center and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Related: The 12 times Congressman John Lewis broke the internet

And it has the bulk of Georgia’s higher education institutions: Emory University, Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, Georgia Tech and Georgia State University are all in the 5th Congressional District. It is also where many of the state’s Fortune 500 companies are based, including Coca Cola Co., Southern Co. and Delta Air Lines.

It is also one of the most diverse districts in the South. Census data show it is about 58 percent black and 33 percent white, along with a growing Hispanic population. The district has an 8.2 percent unemployment rate and the median household income for residents is about $48,000.

Here are Trump’s tweets:

 

More coverage

John Lewis’ fifth district residents respond to Trump’s comments with #defendthe5th, photos of neighborhood

The high rise Donald Trump planned in John Lewis’ district never happened. Sad!

Pastor of MLK’s church: Trump is a ‘small man’ for attacking Atlanta

Donald Trump condemned for attacks on John Lewis and his Atlanta district

All about Georgia’s 5th congressional district

Georgia Republicans struggle to defend Trump’s attack on Lewis

Trump to John Lewis: Fix your ‘horrible’ Atlanta district

Which Georgia Democrats are boycotting Donald Trump’s inauguration?

Politicians, pundits slam Trump for Lewis comments

John Lewis: Donald Trump not ‘a legitimate president’

Trump’s return to Atlanta a reminder of Midtown misfire

Who is Rep. John Lewis

Map: Where is John Lewis’s Atlanta district?

12 times Congressman John Lewis broke the internet

Another historic crusade for John Lewis

John Lewis: ‘We will lay down the burden of racism’

 

Reader Comments 0

60 comments
GeneM
GeneM

Yeah, District 5 is so terrible that Trump praised it lavishly when he thought that he was going to get to build a twin tower nightmare in it. The only thing that stopped the project was the economy crashing due to the mismanagement of the "W" administration. However, that isn't a bad thing (the twin towers not being built) because, aside from the original Trump Tower, none of his other condo buildings took off. His twin towers in Vegas are being used as a hotel because no units were sold which seems par for the course of his properties.

HotDawg
HotDawg

The truth is his district has been as bad as some of the worst in the nation. The parts that were somewhat nice neighborhoods have been destroyed by demographic changes the past 2 1/2 decades.

What has Lewis done to fix it in the decades he's been in office? Squat.

Lewis lives in the past and is pure and simple a race baiter.

The biggest industry blacks latch onto.

RichardF30127
RichardF30127

I read most of the comments below.  Most are against Lewis.  Trump is correct that the area is extremely crime ridden.  Its a fact.  Watch the news.  It is amazing the people that think Russia got Trump elected.  No one has provided any actual PROOF that this happened, or even how.  Just a bunch of cry babies.  Also ironic how many people think all Constitutional freedoms like free speech will go away.  I was more worried about the Democrats screwing with that right.  Look at the liberal companies like Facebook, Google (Youtube) and Yahoo that have been deleting and otherwise editing conservative posts.  Looks like they don't like free speech especially when it is in opposition to what they believe.  And the bit about Trump acting like King Trump.  Really?  What about that guy who wrote all those unconstitutional executive orders usurping the power of Congress.  What was his name?  Oh yeah, King Obama.  But I digress, this is about Lewis.  I've got news for Lewis and any others who think Trump is "illegitimate".  The Constitution is the law of the land and it defines the Electoral College.  The E.C. elected Trump.  He WILL be the next president.  If you are a U.S. citizen, he WILL be your president whether you like it or not no matter where you go in the world.  The only way around that is to renounce your citizenship.  The Democrats are responsible for most of the divisiveness we see in the this country now.  Every time Lewis and his comrades speak, it is something that drives a wedge into our social fabric.  It is time to bring people together.  I don't know where liberals have come up with the supposed ideology that Trump is all of the negative things they purport.  I haven't heard them or seen them and I pay close attention to the facts and what going on.  And I vehemently support term limits on Congress.

cswayt
cswayt

He's right, Lewis is not doing his job. If you can't help your own people, then step down and let someone else do it.

Another comment
Another comment

The CDC unfortunately is stuck in the 4th district. Which has resulted in it having such Jems as Cynthia McKinney and Hank Johnson as its Reps. Not having a representative who was interested in its mission, nor the educated professional employees who carry out its mission. CDC has always had to find other members of Congress who care about its mission. Hence, the name of the CDC campus.

LAKE
LAKE

Every time John Lewis opens his mouth, a total embarrassment! Maybe some speech lessons would help? Serious question: What major legislation has he sponsored. He lives like a pauper on DC. Not sure why we should continue to deify him for actions half a century ago.

Let's turn our support to someone who can work for the 5th District, and that we can respect. Bye-bye John.

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

Wouldn't you love to hear what advice Mr. Lewis could give trump!

Sceptical
Sceptical

Unfortunately, John Lewis did his best work years ago working along with MLK.  Since he became a congressman, I cannot recall any bill he has authored that has been beneficial to his constituents.  Even when we had a Democratic President with Democrat majorities in both houses, I can't recall any bill that he authored to help his district (or blacks in general). He signed on as co-sponser for bills, but none he wrote himself.  I think that Andrew Young or Kaseem Reed would be a much  stronger advocate for his district than Lewis has been.  It's time for Lewis to retire and let younger blood fight for his district and his constituents. 

tailhook2591
tailhook2591

Who cares if John Lewis skips the Inauguration? So what? Really believe he lives in his arrogant fantasy world trying to relive his glory days of the civil rights "move-ment" with sit-ins and boycotts. They don't work anymore, John, and neither do you. He represents a heavily black district. And Trump is right...it IS a cesspool. Just watch the local evening news to see mugshots of Lewis' constituents. 


He is getting way more news coverage than this is worth.

lvg
lvg

I will take my horrible district and all the neglect by John Lewis over a destroyed democracy ruined by a psychotic Russian puppet.

TMD1
TMD1

@lvg Really Ivg - you believe that Trump is a Russian puppet - get off the dope.

bgsnow
bgsnow

Wait, all you people who voted for him - you are in for a rude awakening.  You will lose health care, you will never see the minimum wage raised, and you will be sending your sons and daughters to war.  Unfortunately, the rest of us who had the sense not to vote for him will have to suffer also.  Oh, all these millionaires will live even better than ever - that ought to make you feel so good. How I wish dear Don were half the man that John Lewis is.  And, yes, I was so glad to see that this false first lady will have a glam room in the White House.  How stupid were you to not see through all this?? 

TMD1
TMD1

@bgsnow John Lewis is not legit as a congressman by his same logic. The Dems keep blacks on the government plantation now - how about Lewis addressing black on black crime, 75% of children born out of wedlock, lack of focus on education and job skills, excessive unemployment amongst black youth, breakdown of the black family unit and the other "black culture" issues that are the real problem. If Lewis were smart he would work with Trump to fix these - but instead he pulls out the same old race card.

JohnA1
JohnA1

What right does a soon to be President  have the balls to smash mouth a legend  in social justice because he Dares to speak his. mind.  Wake up America the days of Hatred are upon us once more.  The New King has proclaimed that he is supreme and does no wrong.  He tweets so you cant answer.  He hates the press because they ask questions.  You are going to lose any right to criticize his highness.  Lest you forget Trump spent eight years saying Obama was not an american and the Republicans tried to delegitimize his Pr esidency.  If you read the demographics of Atlanta preceding this section you would have to think he has a screw loose.  The home to Emory University and C.d.C  HeadQuarters to several Fortune Five Hundred Companies is not a failing city.  If you feel that way there is always N.Y.C.    

Jm73
Jm73

Sounds like you're describing Kasim Reed

Joe Langley
Joe Langley

@JohnA1John Lewis is legend on in his own twisted mind and a certified moron.

TMD1
TMD1

@JohnA1 Truth hurts and Lewis is not legit either by his own analysis.

JeAlbert
JeAlbert

@JohnA1 John Lewis started with D. Trump not being a legit President ; Mr. Trump responded. The article starts " President elect D. T. labeled..."  Where is the truth in this article ? When a 'legend' in the Godless minds of the left can say a man isn't legit to an office he was elected to hold, why blame the man who responds?  John Lewis is a guy, an arrogant guy , and a member of the " no-God "  Democrat Party. Let me know when he grows up.

quickdigits
quickdigits

I've been waiting to sink my teeth into something like this! Trump is a self-made billionaire, while John Lewis' money has been made from the tax payers. Lewis should be Ashamed of himself calling the next POTUS Illegitimate!! Oh, and yes, that district IS full of crime, prostitution, carjackings, murders, rapes, home invasions, On A Daily Basis. How do I know? I lived there (in His district) for 17 years and felt it every single day of my life. So Yes! Trump IS Correct About John Lewis' district.....

GeorgiaVoter
GeorgiaVoter

Congressman Lewis has more class and dignity in his little finger than Trump has in his whole body.  

quickdigits
quickdigits

@GeorgiaVoter why then can't I understand one word John Lewis says even though he is speaking English?

Jm73
Jm73

Lewis is being closed minded and not even attempting to get along or work with Trump. Pathetic. That's really going to help the district - of which unfortunately I am a part.

quickdigits
quickdigits

@Jm73 John Lewis was my "Congressman" for 17 Agonizing years! He's been in office like Forever....talk about Time Limits Needed! Whew!


jerrydoodle
jerrydoodle

I wish John Lewis would go away and retire. He is an embarrassment. Sure, he made a contribution when he was younger but he is well past his prime. Not only that, but his district has changed and he does not represent many of us new people.

Jag1000
Jag1000

Whenever I hear John Lewis, I think of "The Little Rascals."  Not sure why.........

XNP
XNP

Wow, this kind of criticism from a guy who hasn't fixed anything in any district yet. And of course, he's wrong about Lewis's district, as he is about so many other things. 


Sad!

DavidATL45
DavidATL45

Trump is unfit to wipe John Lewis' boots.  Trump and his entire family as well as all GOP leadership are trash on a garbage heap of only 23% of registered American voters. 

TMD1
TMD1

@DavidATL45 DavidATL45 - wake up. Lewis may have been important 40 years ago but now he does nothing to fix the broken black culture and wants to keep his "constituents" on the Dem plantation so they will do what he says. Sad but true.

Robert Karma
Robert Karma

It is funny how Trump and his enablers are in a froth over being called out by Rep. Lewis over his legitimacy. This coming after 8 years of having the Tea Party, the right-wing media, most of the Republican Party and reality TV personality Donald Trump all questioned, without any basis in fact, the legitimacy of the Obama presidency. Now we have a plethora of reports showing that Vladimir Putin had Russian Intelligence run a smear and disinformation campaign against Hillary Clinton to influence our election in favor of Donald Trump. There are also reports that Trump has deep financial entanglements with Russian oligarchs and businesses that have serious ethical consequences. There are (unconfirmed at this time) reports that the Russians have compromising evidence of deviant behavior by Trump when he has stayed in Russia. So there is no excuse not to question the legitimacy of Trump's victory. At a minimum, such ethical and legal questions about Trump (and his family & business associates) deserve intense critical scrutiny and oversight by Congress. Given the majority control of both the House and Senate by Republicans, we have already seen their deep desire to eliminate ethical and legal oversight of their own behavior, let alone that of the President. We need outspoken members of Congress, like Rep. Lewis, to have the moral courage to stand up for the Constitution and the citizens of our country. The bleating and whining from the Trump camp is full of sound and fury but signifies nothing but an attempt to distract from Trump's moral turpitude.

RichardF30127
RichardF30127

@Robert Karma "Reports"?  What about FACTS.  You watch too much liberal media.  When the Obama controlled intelligence community refuses to release its "evidence" to Congress, it raises serious questions about the authenticity of these claims.  Republicans want to revamp the ethics oversight because it is extremely corrupt. Regarding Lewis standing up for the Constitution, I would suggest he actually read it.  I have several times.  It states very clearly how the Electoral College works  Trump was legitimately elected.  The most "bleating and whining" is coming from the liberal cry babies who cannot accept defeat.

oldmanfromalabama
oldmanfromalabama

John Lewis is another reason why this country needs term limits for ALL elected politicians!

weetamoe
weetamoe

Lewis refused to accept the legitimacy of G. W. Bush's presidency also. He obviously agrees with Hillary's condemnation of political opponents as "irredeemable,"   a sickening contrast to the views of the brilliant loving man whose coattails on which he rode  to his political career. Lewis lied and smeared Tea Party groups and other opponents of Obamacare by claiming  they subjected him to racist epithets and spit on him---a claim that is verifiably false. His pretense of believing in and striving for a "beloved community" and his gullibility or mendacity in spreading his conspiracy theories prevent him from occupying any moral high ground.

lvg
lvg

Dictator elect to John Lewis:


""""Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results," Trump tweeted early on Saturday morning, adding, "All talk, talk, talk – no action or results. Sad!"


Donald- here is a big f- you back from a resident of  John Lewis District. No falling apart in the intown neighborhoods due to brother John. Only thing falling apart is our democracy due to you.

Jag1000
Jag1000

@lvg Can I give you a big FU as well?  From a loving Deplorable.

RichardF30127
RichardF30127

@lvg Our democracy is falling apart because of people like you who divisive and don't want to pull together.  You also miss the facts which are something liberals really hate.  Wake-up.  Take the blinders off.  Get some glasses for your near-sightedness.  People like Brother John are the problem.  You say "No falling apart in the intown neighborhoods due to brother John."  Okay, granted, he is not responsible.  Who is.  Republicans?  The district is a Democrat/liberal district.  If you should blame someone or group, look inward.

SoMidtownItHurts
SoMidtownItHurts

We can't be that terrible, remember 2006 when Trump had two towers with his name splashed across the top under development in Midtown? And then he like many others in Atlanta had his property foreclosed on.  OOps.

JBene
JBene

John Lewis's City of Atlanta won 7,000 jobs, from 40 companies, in 2016 alone. Falling apart we're not.

Jag1000
Jag1000

@JBene Not talking about the city-his district.  Reading is FUN-damental.