Did Warnock Attend Castro Speech? He Won’t Say

November 15, 2020

Georgia Democratic Senate candidate Raphael Warnock on Sunday evaded a question about his attendance at a 1995 Fidel Castro speech at a church he belonged to and offered a faint condemnation of the Cuban dictator.

"I understand why Kelly Loeffler is trying to change the subject. I was a youth pastor. I had nothing to do with that program. I did not make any decisions regarding the program," Warnock said on CNN's State of the Union. "I've never met the Cuban dictator and so I'm not connected to him." Warnock also said he has never celebrated Castro and understood why people consider the Cuban dictator reprehensible.

In 1995, the New York church Warnock worked for invited Castro to give a speech to its congregation. In footage of the speech, the head pastor of the church appeared to praise Castro and the audience chanted "Fidel! Fidel! Fidel!"

In recent weeks, Warnock has faced accusations that he supports socialism. During a 2009 sermon, the Democrat said he was "sick and tired" of attacks on socialist policies. Warnock has also praised anti-Semitic reverend Jeremiah Wright and said Americans must "repent" for supporting Donald Trump and the country's "worship of whiteness."