Black church leaders in Miami-Dade remain faithful to Kendrick “no quit” Meekby Ana Valdes | October 31st, 2010
MIAMI — With a brown Bible in hand, Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Kendrick Meek set out Sunday morning to attract last-minute support in some of Miami-Dade and Broward County’s largest black churches.
The Miami congressman got nothing more than well wishes and hopeful chants from hundreds of supporters, who say they will stick to his campaign despite recent rumors that he’d consider an early exit.
“Don’t you quit, don’t you quit,” chanted a crowd of women at Mt. Hermon AME Church in Miami Gardens, the third in a tour of almost a half dozen churches Meek visited in South Florida.
Members of the Mt. Hermon congregation extended their hands over Meek’s head and asked for God to bless him during the final stretch of the campaign.
“You can’t get elected unless you pass by Mt. Hermon,” said Rev. John F. White II, the church’s pastor and Meek’s friend.“We call him Kendrick‘don’t quit’ Meek.”
Meek told the crowd in Miami Gardens that his faith is keeping him optimistic that he will be victorious on Tuesday, despite poll numbers showing he trails independent Gov. Charlie Crist and Republican Marco Rubio.
“If you just have a little faith, a little faith in God’s people that they will have the chance to vote, then we will be alright,” Meek said.
The candidate’s church tour began around 8:30 a.m. in Liberty City, where despite the rain and exhaustion after weeks of campaigning, Meek visited his congregation at Mount Tabor Missionary Baptist Church.
Meek ran a little behind schedule, but his mother, former Miami Congresswoman Carrie Meek, was waiting for him in the church’s second pew.
“There’s nothing like your mom getting to church before you,”Meek said with a smile before joining the elder Meek for worship.
Rev. George McCrae, Mount Tabor’s leader, made reference to the time when blacks could not vote, and asked his followers to think of Meek when they visited the polls.
“This is the man to pick,” McCrae said.