A White House senior advisor named Cedric Richmond is claiming that the Biden administration is “going to start acting now” on reparations for black Americans, declaring that there isn’t time for a commission to study the proposal.
The issue of forming a commission to study reparations is being debated in Congress. Richmond told Axios in an interview for HBO that Democrats shouldn’t wait for Congress on the explosive topic. That interview will air on Monday.
“We don’t want to wait on a study. We’re going to start acting now,” he declared to Axios. “We have to start breaking down systemic racism and barriers that have held people of color back and especially African Americans. We have to do stuff now.”
“Richmond said that while the timeline for the commission isn’t knowable, ‘if you start talking about free college tuition to [Historically Black Colleges and Universities] and you start talking about free community college in Title I and all of those things, I think that you are well on your way,’” Axios reported concerning the interview.
Video Credit: CBS News
The White House indicated just recently that Biden may be open to the consideration of reparations but it would depend on Congress. Biden is reportedly committed to taking “comprehensive action to address the systemic racism that persists today.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki once again took the lead during an exchange with a reporter who grilled her over Biden’s campaign mention that he supported a study for reparations. “Does the president support the legislation?” the reporter asked Psaki. “He stopped short of saying that during the campaign. Would he sign that if it came to his desk?”
“Well, he’s supported a study of reparations, which is I believe is what’s being discussed, and studying the continuing impacts of slavery, which is being discussed in this hearing on H.R. 40, I believe it is,” Psaki vaguely noted. “And he continues to demonstrate his commitment to take comprehensive action to address the systemic racism that persists today. Obviously, that is — having that study is a part of that, but he has signed an executive order on his first day, which would begin to deliver on his commitment to having an across-government approach to addressing racial inequality and making sure equity is a part of his entire policy agenda.”
The late Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) started the ball rolling on reparations in 1989. It has been introduced over and over again by Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX).
Obama never approached the hot potato issue. He did tell Bruce Springsteen in a recent podcast that he would have liked to implement reparations as part of his political agenda, but the “politics of white resistance” made it a “non-starter.”
“Obama said he believes reparations are ‘justified’ and that ‘there’s not much question that the wealth… the power of this country was built in significant part — not exclusively, maybe not even the majority of it, but a large portion of it — was built on the backs of slaves,’” reported Fox News.
The concept of reparations has been questioned by many. Issues such as who will foot the bill, who would get reparations, how much would they get, and can we afford such a politically correct social mandate, are all on the table.
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