“Dr. Cummings, don’t think you’ll ever be alone,” said ‘Ladies in Red’ founder Brenda Knight. “We are here, we got you. You don’t have to worry. All you have to do is call BK. We going to pack it up and come out wherever it is.”
Knight was addressing congressional hopeful Dr. Maya Rockymoore Cummings in the Bay Area from Baltimore, Md., to gain name recognition as she prepares to run for the seat once held by her husband, the late Elijah Cummings.
Maya Cummings then delivered a rousing speech at an intimate meet-and-greet held January 16 at the Doubletree Hotel in American Canyon near Vallejo, sharing her plans with the audience on how she intends to pick up the mantel and move forward with her husband’s agenda.
Cummings told the group that their theme, ‘Trust Black Women’ in this election year of 2020 is absolutely right on target. “And let me add to that, trust Black women because Black women trust God,” she said. “This is a faith walk for me because on October 17th, I buried my loving, beloved husband and I’ve vowed to continue his legacy.”
In her opening comments, Cummings responded to the groups’ invitation to the event. “Black women are the strength of our community,” she noted. “We have been the backbone of not only the Democratic party, but also the strength of our families.”
“We give and we keep giving, and rarely do we think of ourselves. Sometimes, we fall down but we keep getting up and keep marching on. So, thank you for showing up and coming out. Thank you for being the strength of the community. And thank you for just being apparent about how we create change in our society. We need changes right now, more so than we’ve ever needed them.”
“I’m building upon Elijah’s life and legacy,” she said. “That means I’ll continue to fight for his efforts to preserve and protect our democracy. I will advance his work around universal health care and affordable prescription drugs. I have a broad agenda that focuses on what I call the HOPE agenda.”
“Hope stands for healthy and safe communities. It stands for more opportunities for youth, prosperous families and equitable economic development and economic justice. Each one of these things is often overlooked. It’s an agenda that absolutely needs to start. Hope for the future, hope for Baltimore, hope for our country and nation and hope to get this man out of the White House.”
The message Cummings wants to convey to her future constituents in the Baltimore area is that she will fight for them. “Elijah met me when I was fighting and we started fighting together,” said Cummings. “And now I am seeking to continue to fight because this is going to be a battle.
“It’s a battle for the future of our country, our democracy and our community. Civil rights are on the table, women’s rights, and human rights. You name it, it’s on the table and we need to fight and stand up for what we believe in, and that is a diverse, inclusive and prosperous country for all. We have a lot of work to do.”
Cummings’ second Bay Area appearance was later that evening at a fundraiser held for her at Geoffrey’s in downtown Oakland.
As one of the sponsors of the event, Knight closed out the meeting by noting that ‘Ladies in Red’ supports strong, Black women. “That is one of our primary goals,” said Knight. “And for those who are not strong, we try to help them along. That is why this event has been so wonderful, because Dr. Cummings is such a dynamic person. I can see that she is going to continue in the legacy of her husband.
“If I were able to speak to the people of Baltimore, I would tell them they have someone who has their interests at heart, in their mind, in their work habits, and you would want to vote for this person so that you can know that someone is looking out for you.
“You all know what her husband has done for you,” Knight went on. “She’s getting ready to pick up that mantel and continue his work. So support her, vote for her. Get out and tell people to vote for her. Because all across the nation, and right here in California, we’re getting ready to support her anyway we can to make sure that machine operates well when she becomes Congresswoman Maya Cummings.
The event was sponsored by the Solano/Napa Chapter of Black Women Organized for Political Action (BWOPA), Ladies in Red, the law office of Otis L. Jones, the Solano County Black Chamber of Commerce, the African American Alliance and the Napa Solano Central Labor Council.