Vernon Jones (ex-Democratic state Rep.) is facing a discrimination suit that could bring back former Democratic State Representative. Jones had previously challenged the Georgia governor. Brian Kemp.
Jones, who was successfully sued for discriminating against white employees when he was DeKalb county’s CEO, quit a recent interview with conservative commentator Stew Peters when questions about the lawsuit were raised.
Jones retorted after Peters raised the matter.
“It’s completely false. It’s erroneous, it’s reckless. And that’s why I just said, when you try to be holier than thou, that ‘oh, you’re different from everybody else.’ No, you’re not.”
He continued, “You’re here with a bunch of foolishness. Now let’s get to the next question.”
Jones attempted to alter the subject of immigration and Arizona audit but Peters wouldn’t allow him to. “You’re not going to avoid the real questions here,” he said.
Peters continued to talk over the former state representative, as if trying to stop discussion on legal action. Jones eventually stopped talking and the host said:
“And you’re accusing me of being foolish. If there was shocking evidence of an overt and unabashed pattern of discrimination in your administration –“
Vernon Jones quit the interview at this moment.
After Jones left, Peters said:
“That’s what bullies do. They shout down and gaslight you, lie constantly, and avoid any light that might be shed on their darkness.
And he didn’t want me to get to the facts. He knew what was coming, so I had to mute him, and he bailed.”
OMG! MAGA GA Gov Candidat Vernon Jones is a complete loser tonight. He cuts off his feed and quits the interview after being confronted by right-wing talk host, who asks about potential lawsuits against Jones for racism against whites. You must see! pic.twitter.com/QvTCOjel9e
— Ron Filipkowski (@RonFilipkowski) October 8, 2021
The lawsuit to which Peters was referring claimed Jones “orchestrated a scheme to replace three top, white managers in the parks department with blacks,” according to the Atlanta Journal-ConstitutionAccording to the report:
In the culmination of a case that wound through the courts for six years, the jurors found that former DeKalb CEO Vernon Jones, Jones’ former executive assistant, Richard Stogner, former parks director Marilyn Boyd Drew and DeKalb County itself were all liable for damages.
According to the report,
Two of the plaintiffs received damages, Michael Bryant who passed away in February and John Drake, former parks deputy directors.
The verdict came after a jury of six – five white and one black – decided Jones had practiced racial discrimination while serving as CEO of DeKalb county.
Jones vehemently denied the allegations during the trial, insisting he “wanted the best and the brightest” workers. He continued:
That meant blacks, whites, Asians, Latinos, Republicans, Democrats, Independents, gay, straight, anybody who wanted to work for DeKalb County.”
Jones acknowledged that Jones believed white employees he wanted to replace with black workers.
In August 2004, the trial started. The plaintiff’s attorneys questioned witnesses about the matter to demonstrate there was a plan to discriminate against white employees.
According to testimony, 33 of the high-ranking county managers were black while 61 were white when Jones was elected in 2001. There were 60 and 57 high-ranking white county managers, respectively, by August 2005.
They heard the following: jurors heard a recorded call between Assistant County Manager Morris Williams and Joe Stone, who headed the county’s human resources department. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported:
Stone and Williams were unaware that Stone had accidentally allowed their phone conversation to be recorded by another county employee.
The employee gave the recording to J. Tom Morgan, the county’s former district attorney, who eventually represented the plaintiffs.
In the call, Stone expressed anger that the county’s new fire chief wished to promote four, white firemen to the rank of battalion chief.
“He wants to pick ‘em from a population that is solid snow white already,” he said. “Now he got to cut that [expletive]Vernon. … He told David Foster not to — we don’t promote anybody until you figure out how you can fix this problem.”
Three white and one black employees filed the suit. Daily Citizen NewsIn 2006, this was reported:
The suit was filed by three whites — Becky Kelley, Michael Bryant and John Drake — and one black, Herbert Lowe, who says he was fired because he would not discriminate against white managers.
Kelley was the parks director for nine-years before Jones became president. Williams had told Kelley that he would not employ a white person to be her deputy director. Richard Stogner, who was Jones’ executive assistant, suggested that she offer the position to Marilyn Boyd Drew, a black woman and the former head of the parks department. Stogner and Drew were also defendants in the trial and were also found to have “created and maintained a hostile work environment.”
One year later, Jones took over for Kelley and replaced Drew with a staff restructuring. Later, she quit in 2002. From Daily Citizen NewsYou can find this link:
Bryant, Kelley and Drake allege that their job responsibilities were significantly reduced. They were also intentionally excluded from discussions about hiring or other issues in the department. [Herbert]Drew, Lowe claimed that Drew ordered him withhold information about white employees to make them appear competent.
Lowe also said he was told by Jones, Stone and Drew that the CEO’s plan was to increase the park department’s number of black managers by removing white managers.
Jones was approached by the former president Donald Trump in June to be his challenger. Kemp was nominated for governorship. A mere week after his announcement, he declared his candidacy.
Stew Peters’ interview was the first time Jones’ legal issues came to light in conservative media. While the former Democrat has enjoyed much support on the right – especially after being boosted by Trump – it could be possible that this news could damage his chances of replacing Kemp in the primaries. Jones has not spoken publicly about the suit since he announced his candidacy, but it appears unlikely that he will avoid the matter for long.