May 16th, 2009
04:00 PM ET
11 years ago

King: Stimulus yet to reach 'double-whammied' Selma

Editor's note: On CNN's "State of the Union," host and chief national correspondent John King goes outside the Beltway to report on the issues affecting communities across the country.

SELMA, Alabama (CNN) - To cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge into Selma is to share a stage with history. And these days, it is to come face-to-face with a bleak present.

Storefront after storefront is closed, and many of the buildings in the famous photos from the days of the historic March 1965 events have fallen into disrepair.

"It is very depressing," Selma Mayor George P. Evans tells us during an evening walk down Broad Street in downtown. "People are not buying. People are not spending. Businesses are going out of business."

This is the heart of Alabama's "Black Belt," and Selma is a reminder that a recession that has punished so many across America has hit hardest in places that were already struggling.

"A double whammy," Evans says. "It does seem to be those cities with the largest population of minorities that has taken the biggest hit."

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Filed under: State of the Union
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Karen - Missouri

    There are many communities in bad shape all over the U.S. and not only the black communities. It's just that bad an economy. All cities have problems and have for many years...partly the loss of good tax income from corporations, manufacturing, etc. Many companies pull out leaving behind a mess. That's been a problem for years, not just's just more noticeable and the media is finally broadcasting the problems. The media is too worried about Newt and Nancy. Oh, yeah, then there's the Republicans who only deal with the rich and profitable.

    Why doesn't the media go after Republicans once in awhile and let this administration do its job?

    May 16, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  2. Republicans are the American Taliban

    And the Bush administration never did quite get to the quadruple wammied Katrina victims in New Orleans ...huh John???

    May 16, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  3. Cali Mike

    How obvious, The title is implying that the stimulus isnt working therefore Obama isnt successgul. President Obama has done more for the working class in 3 months than Bush did in 8 years.

    Clinton was great too. Bush Sr., Reagan, Carter and Nixon were heartless elitists making the rich richer

    May 16, 2009 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  4. Saidapet Saidapet


    Everyone understands that people are suffering in this economic downturn, It is just disappointing and saddening that you have to broadcast it as your prime time State of the Union. If you look at your last at least 3 shows, it is nothing but the same story. Well good luck with the show, anyway I have stopped watching it.

    May 16, 2009 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  5. Danny J

    Ironic that the people that need the stimulus the most aren't getting it, even with a minority the supposedly "understands them" in office. What's more ironic is that thousands of dead people are getting them.

    May 16, 2009 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  6. Ken in NC

    Well I have stopped watching any appearances by John King since the day President Obama took office. It appears that John King, on CNN, a station that I consider to be middle to mildly left has gone hard core negative with virtually all reporting he has done on President Obama. I guess he has the right to report the news as he sees it but I also have the right to view it if I consider it to be worthy and I no longer consider the reporting of John King to be worthy.

    May 16, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  7. Ted

    It is not just the minority areas, it is rural America that is not getting stimulus money either. There are areas that are skipped typically due to circumstance and nothing to really do with their demographics. But John King is not seeing the whole picture and unfortunately that is typical of the media.

    May 16, 2009 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  8. barking republican ankle biters

    Looks like a good place for John King to retire. Stay there and dont come back John.There are many other fascists living in that state.

    May 16, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  9. Susan

    I am still to meet a person who likes John King's analysis and reporting.

    May 16, 2009 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  10. melody

    What does this story imply? What are you getting at John? Because, Selma was the forefront of the Civil Rights Movement, this should be news because the President is black. Are you insinuating the President is not doing enough for blacks? It seems to me you are heading in that direction. There are thousands of other small towns who may not receive stimulus assistant, so why are you focusing on Selma. I guess you are hoping that if African Americans are aware of this story, they will lose trust in the President and not support him. You are wrong; as if we are stupid enough to believe this crap. Enough republican tool!!

    May 16, 2009 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  11. Ernesto

    This is true of many small towns. My hometown in VA has lost over half it's residents from my childhood. Downtown is dead and what few local businesses are left are being slowly choked out by the Wal-Mart located outside the city center. No jobs are coming in and those that are there are dwindling daily. Shame, but Selma isn't alone or unique in falling apart at the seams.

    May 16, 2009 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  12. cold hard facts..

    It is the governor's responsibility to divide the stimulus between mayors.

    Remember this governor planned to turn down the stimulus money in the first place...

    The fact that this money has not reached Selma, stinks of favoritism to the more affluent areas and larger cities. The money will probably never reach Selma, even long after other cities have recovered. Since Selma has always been a poor place, the people in charge there have no intention to save it or even make it part of the stimulus recovery.

    May 16, 2009 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  13. Ex-republican

    And, why they don't ask republicans to help them?
    Alabama is red state, right?

    May 16, 2009 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  14. hongli

    John King is chasing away viewers fron CNN on Sunday Mornings. He and Ed Henry should apply for jobs at Fox News or Rush Limbaugh's Radio gig.

    May 16, 2009 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |