US city council candidate says she wants to keep town 'a white community as much as possible'

Lily Puckett

A city council candidate in Michigan told an audience that she wanted to keep her city “a white community”.

Jean Cramer shocked constituents and politicians in Marysville, Michigan when she gave an overtly racist answer to a question about how the town should attract more foreign-born residents in the Great Lakes area.

“Keep Marysville a white community as much as possible,” she said.

Later, when a local newspaper asked if she’d like to clarify her answer, Ms Cramer appeared to double down on her beliefs.

"Husband and wife need to be the same race. Same thing with kids," she said. "That's how it's been from the beginning of, how can I say, when God created the heaven and the earth. He created Adam and Eve at the same time. But as far as me being against blacks, no I'm not."

Marysville is a small town near Detroit with a population of 9,700, over 90 per cent of which is white. But the city council meeting room in which Ms Cramer made the racist statement was named for a Syrian native, Joseph Johns, who owned a local business and eventually became an elected official.

His daughter, Kathy Hayman is currently serving as a city official and was present for Ms Cramer’s remarks. She responded that she was “so upset and shocked”.

“So basically, what you’ve said is that my father and his family had no business to be in this community,” she said to Ms Cramer.

Council member Paul Wessel also spoke out against Ms Cramer’s comments, saying that anyone who makes it to Marysville "should be allowed to live" there.

Ms Cramer is one of five candidates running for three city council seats in Marysville. The Detroit News reports that other candidates present at the forum were deeply troubled by her comments, with one responding by checking a calendar “and making sure it’s still 2019”.

Donald Trump just barely won Michigan in 2016, but St Clair County, where Marysville is located, voted for him overwhelmingly.

  • Read more