ST. CROIX — Senator Alicia Hansen on Thursday night endorsed Albert Bryan and Tregenza Roach for Governor and Lieutenant Governor of the Virgin Islands, an announcement that added momentum to a team that has been the recipient of a wave of support.
The backing from Mrs. Hansen, who has a loyal base of supporters on St. Croix, is expected to help Mr. Bryan on the Big Island, where he was roundly beaten by Governor Kenneth Mapp during the November 6, General Election.
Mrs. Hansen made the announcement on her Facebook page during a live broadcast following a missive that highlighted a number of ills in the community — from poor healthcare, to crime. She also criticized Mr. Mapp for what she said was his lack of compassion for the people of the territory.
Mrs. Hansen spoke of the hundreds of Virgin Islands medical patients who were evacuated to mainland facilities after the storms. Multiple reports have been written about their situation — from feeling abandoned by their government, to sometimes fearing they would not have a place to stay while on the U.S. mainland. The senator decried their plight and made the medical evacuee issue a central part of the talk Thursday night.
“Without that compassion none of us will be well served,” the veteran public official said. “Without understanding that you have to be sensitive to the needs of the people of the Virgin Islands, then we will not be well served,” she reiterated.
Eight minutes into the Facebook live broadcast, Mrs. Hansen endorsed the Bryan-Roach team. “We need a better government, and I talked and decided to support Albert Bryan and Tregenza Roach,” she said, as her supporters, gathered at the Donastorg-Hansen headquarters on St. Croix next to Joe’s Bar and Grille, erupted with cheers.
Mr. Bryan then entered the headquarters and was received jubilantly by Mrs. Hansen’s supporters. There, he lauded Mrs. Hansen for what he described as her undying dedication to the people of the territory — especially those oftentimes marginalized.
“For a long time I have admired the senator and her deep passion for the people of the Virgin Islands, and that’s the kind of passion that we need if we’re going to move forward and change course in a way that’s going to build back our islands,” Mr. Bryan said.
He added, “Whether it’s our sons and daughters who have been dying in the streets, or our people who have been taken from our homeland and shipped away and are slowing dying waiting for medical care, we have to make sure that we have a government that is empathetic, that cares about people, and that is headed not only by someone who has vision and compassion for the people, but is bolstered by strong people like you and the good Senator Chucky Hansen.”
Mr. Bryan described Mrs. Hansen as having the heart of a lion and the voice of the people. “In our administration we’re going to do as much as possible to keep her close, to power us, to make us always remember the littlest voice in the community, because Chucky cares all the time for all the people of the Virgin Islands,” the gubernatorial candidate said.
The Hansen endorsement was the most sought-after backing because of her core supporters, many of whom have stuck with the senator throughout her over 20 years in elected office, and whose directives many follow.
In closing, speaking to Mrs. Hansen’s supporters, Mr. Bryan said, “I want to thank each and everyone of you for your support, and we look forward to finally ending the reign of terror,” he jabbed, an assault on Mr. Mapp’s sometimes boorish demeanor.
“And we ain’t ‘fraid them!” Mr. Bryan hollered, a nod to the Donastorg-Hansen theme, taken from Machel Montano’s and Bungie Garlin’s Soca duo, “Buss Head”.