Democratic Georgia state Rep. Vernon Jones — who made headlines first for endorsing President Donald Trump's reelection, then for resigning after getting attacked by members of his own party for the endorsement— announced Thursday that he will finish his term in office after all.
It only took Jones — a member of the Georgia House of Representatives — a day to change his mind.
"I will not allow the Democrats to bully me into submission," he said in a Twitter message. "I will not let them win. I will NOT resign."
What are the details?
In an accompanying video, Jones noted the "barrage of attacks and name-calling by the far left in the Democratic party" that led his resignation announcement Wednesday. But then he said an "overwhelming amount of support" came flying in from across the country: "Every walk of life, every age, every color, every party."
"That was emotional, and that was motivational," he continued. "And you know what, America? I thought about it, and I talked to my family, and I talked to my supporters. Because [of] what you did for me, I'm going to remain on the battlefield. I'm going to complete my term. I'm going to continue to put my country before my party. And I'm going to do everything I can to get Donald J. Trump reelected. Because he's the man for this job, he's the man for this office."
What's the background?
When Jones first endorsed Trump last week, he told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution it was an easy decision.
"It's very simple to me," he told the paper. "President Trump's handling of the economy, his support for historically black colleges, and his criminal justice initiatives drew me to endorse his campaign."
He added to the Journal-Constitution that "a lot of African Americans ... clearly see and appreciate he's doing something that's never been done before. When you look at the unemployment rates among black Americans before the pandemic, they were at historic lows. That's just a fact."
Attacks from fellow Democrats
Jones said his fellow Democrats attacked him for endorsing Trump. The Journal-Constitution observed that "Democratic officials tried ... to disown Jones," and chairwoman of the Georgia Democratic Party — state Sen. Nikema Williams — called Jones an "embarrassment."
Fellow Democratic Rep. James Beverly told the paper that "we're not sure what was on Vernon's mind. It's antithetical to what we believe in."
'Sick and tired'
"I'm sick and tired of me and my family being attacked and harassed by the Democrat Party for putting my country before my party," Jones said, according to the Journal-Constitution. Upon announcing his resignation Wednesday, he told the paper he still would "help the Democrat Party get rid of its bigotry against black people that are independent and conservative. I endorsed the white guy [Donald Trump] that let blacks out of jail, and they endorsed the white guy [Joe Biden] that put blacks in jail."
A spokesman said Jones filed paperwork to withdraw his candidacy for reelection, the Journal-Constitution reported, adding that he was preparing for a Democratic primary rematch against Rhonda Taylor, whom he defeated in 2016. The paper added that there is no Republican on the ballot, which makes Taylor the presumptive representative in January.