Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said on Tuesday that the United States does not need to pay reparations for slavery in part because “we elected an African-American president.”
McConnell was confronted with a question about reparations during a press gaggle at the Capitol.
“I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago for whom none of us currently living are responsible is a good idea,” the Kentucky Republican opined. “We tried to deal with our original sin of slavery by fighting a Civil War, by passing landmark civil rights legislation. We’ve elected an African-American president.”
“I think we’re always a work in progress in this country but no one currently alive was responsible for that,” he added. “And I don’t think we should be trying to figure out how to compensate for it.”
McConnell argued that “it would be pretty hard to figure out who to compensate.”
“We’ve had waves of immigrants as well who have come to the country and experienced dramatic discrimination of one kind or another,” he remarked. “So, no, I don’t think reparations are a good idea.”