LeBron James won't engage President Trump before election: 'I damn sure won’t go back and forth with that guy'

Chris Cwik
·2-min read

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James wants you to get out and vote. Now that the NBA season is over — and James is once again a champion — James is focusing on his More Than a Vote campaign, which is aimed at getting the Black community to vote in the 2020 Presidential election.

That strategy represents a shift for James, who campaigned for Hillary Clinton in 2016. Instead of embracing a particular candidate this time around, James told Astead W. Herndon of the New York Times James felt he needed to let Black people know their vote matters.

“Because a lot of us just thought our vote doesn’t count: That’s what they’ve been taught, that’s how they’ve been educated, that how they’ve always felt. They’ve felt kind of institutionalized. But I want to give them the right information, I want them to know how important they can be.”

James was also asked about how that strategy relates to President Donald Trump. James has been an outspoken critic of Trump in the past, and once called Trump a “bum” on Twitter. James didn’t refer to Trump directly with his answer, but said he has no interest in getting into a “back and forth with that guy.”

“I don’t go back and forth with anybody. And I damn sure won’t go back and forth with that guy. But we want better, we want change in our community. We always talk about, “We want change,” and now we have the opportunity to do that.”

Voting Playbook
Voting Playbook

James has discussed Trump a couple of times during the 2020 NBA season. In August, James said he didn’t care if Trump was not watching NBA games due to the players kneeling. James also weighed in after Trump suggested people boycott Goodyear tires. Goodyear is based in Akron, Ohio, where James was born. Instead of going after Trump, James decided to lend support to Goodyear workers, saying Akron doesn’t “bend, break or fold for nobody.”

LeBron James isn’t the only athlete involved in More Than a Vote

While James has been the organizer and face of More Than a Vote, he’s not the only athlete involved in the campaign. Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, Phoenix Mercury guard Skylar Diggins-Smith, New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara and Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young are all involved with the group.

Damian Lillard and Odell Beckham Jr. are also connected to the campaign, and appeared in a PSA for More Than a Vote.

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