Sen. Mitch McConnell issued a statement to reporters on Tuesday (June 18) stating that he believes the time for reparations for slavery to Black Americans is over. McConnell seemingly suggests that the passage of civil rights legislation and the election of President Barack Obama along with the difficulty of knowing who to pay gets the country off the hook.
The Hill reports:
“I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago for whom none us currently living are responsible is a good idea,” McConnell said. “We’ve tried to deal with our original sin of slavery by fighting a civil war, by passing landmark civil rights legislation. We elected an African American president.”
McConnell was asked about reparations during a weekly press conference, which comes a day before the House Judiciary Committee will hold the first hearing on the issue in a decade.
“I think we’re always a work in progress in this country, but no one currently alive was responsible for that, and I don’t think we should be trying to figure out how to compensate for it. First of all, it would be pretty hard to figure out who to compensate. … No, I don’t think reparations are a good idea,” McConnell continued.
Reparations have been an important talking point among some of the Democratic Party presidential hopefuls, and the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties will hold a hearing today (June 19) on potentially passing legislation on reparations.
Donald Trump: I wont apologize to the Central Park 5.— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) June 18, 2019
Mitch McConnell: Hold my beer https://t.co/faunyKbUrK
WHY are we still allowing people such as @senatemajldr to still have a say in our country. The rhetoric coming from this man ALONE should show us how bad we need new ideals in office and lose this baggage.— Christopher Reynolds (@Nevermore360) June 19, 2019
The discussions of #Reparations for our past should include what is currently happening to Black and Brown people. How can @senatemajldr claim the crime is settled as past history when the #GOP continues to purposefully inspire crimes against humanity every damn day?— Beware the broken edges (@MichaelCAdams3) June 19, 2019
Mitch McConnell pointed to the civil war as a kind of reparations for black people. But everywhere that freedom came it reflected the prerogatives and interests of powerful white people. Emancipation came 2.5 years late. Equality is 156 years late and counting.— jelani cobb (@jelani9) June 19, 2019
Allow me to interpret @senatemajldr on reparations:— Bishop Talbert Swan (@TalbertSwan) June 19, 2019
“Slavery ended 150 years ago. We fought a Civil War to set you ungrateful n***ers free, we let y’all vote, and even voted in a n****r president. We weren’t alive. We’re not responsible, y’all ain’t getting s**t.” pic.twitter.com/d1rPpSqbF0
Today in America, the two most powerful GOP leaders: Mitch McConnell says electing a Black president made up for slavery & @realDonaldTrump doubled down on the wrongful conviction of Black & Hispanic teenagers. Almost at the exact same minute. https://t.co/hQpTMjhej5— Rep. Joe Kennedy III (@RepJoeKennedy) June 18, 2019