league, member of
house of delegates
and chairwoman of
party and former
, first african-american ever elected to a governor's office. ran for president in
of richmond in
. governor, i want to start with you. although a basic level, i'm curious what your reaction is to the verdict last night and what you've seen in the aftermath of that verdict.
well, i was surprised by the verdict, first off, and somewhat disappointed, and yet i've been listening to the questions and answers that have been coming forth relative to your prepounding them. some of them surprised me. start off with this, you had an all-white courtroom, for all practical purposes, other than the defendant's presence and some of the witnesses -- i'm sorry, the victim and some of the witnesses. an all-white jury. all of the prosecutors were white. the defense people were white. if race didn't
play a part
in it, then you ask this very simple question, if the florida
stand your ground
law is not a part of what people considered, then why could you come to this verdict? the other thing that i would say is to follow some bit of what you've suggested, you've got a young man who has done nothing wrong criminally. he's been killed. no one debates that. so what caused his death? so the action that involved him being killed was the action of the defendant. to the extent he goes unpunished for someone who's done nothing doesn't make any sense. if the law has to be changed in florida, you should change it. or if this could happen again under the same set of circumstances, that's not what we have fought for in terms of bringing justice to all, making certain that three preceps. america can't stand this kind of justice and people around the world would look at us and say, what are you talking about when you tell us how to bhaf. i'm shocked with it. i'm disappointed in it. i don't know all of the facts. i was not there. i don't know whether the prosecutors presented the case as best they could. i do think pretty clearly that race did
play a part
i want to ask you because you came -- came of age, i guess, during and before the
civil rights movement
. there was a point in the press conference after the verdict where benjamin crump, lawyer for trayvon martin's family, likened -- he said trayvon martin will go down in history. remembered with
. i wonder what you make of that comparison.
that's probably true but it doesn't bring him back. it doesn't bring his life back. how many emmett tills and
and trayvon martins must be sacrificed before the wheels of justice, which grind so slowly, grind for meting out justice for all. i would have been very concerned when that jury was set to see six
. i would have been very, very concerned. i don't know how or why the prosecutor would allow that to take place without some degree of closed session to say, hey, wait a minute, let's go talk to the judge. you know where the strikes came from. from the defense. you can't tell me there were not
people of color
, that the jury would have been selected from. somebody had to strike certain people. it would be interesting to see if the people stricken were black. if they were not included, why not?
we're short on time, but i wonder as a lawyer if you can answer that quickly. do you look -- could the prosecution have done better?
the problem is sanford is 80% white, so the jury pool is representative of that.