National Security

Beto Would Support Reparations for Slavery if He’s Elected

Eager to go up against Trump in the presidential election, Democrat says, 'Absolutely, I would sign that into law'

Image Credit: PAUL RATJE/AFP/Getty Images

Democratic candidate for president in 2020 Beto O’Rourke was asked recently if he would support reparations for slavery by signing Sheila Jackson Lee’s bill that would do just that.

Appearing at the Nation Action Network’s convention alongside Rev. Al Sharpton, O’Rourke said, “Yes. Civil rights are not just those victories that I began with at the outset of my comments, but the injustices that have been visited and continue to be visited on people.”

“We will never get the change that we need to live up to the promise of this country. So absolutely, I would sign that into law,” O’Rourke said.

This was a change in position for O’Rourke.

 “Just last month, O’Rourke told an audience in Iowa he was not in favor of traditional reparations for African Americans, a position he was later confronted on during a stop in South Carolina,” as U.S. News and World Report noted.

“‘Why should I, as a black man, vote for you when you oppose reparations?'” a man asked O’Rourke, as Mediaite reported.

“O’Rourke replied with a long answer, arguing that making institutional changes like eliminating voter identification laws and gerrymandering would ‘begin … to get some of that repair,'” U.S. News also noted.

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So between then and now, O’Rourke has apparently decided to come out fully in favor of reparations?

Wednesday’s admission of support for Lee’s bill marks the first time O’Rourke has been clear about whether he supports it or not.

It will be interesting to see what the rest of the Democratic field does.

Related: ‘Shameful’ That Dems Keep Toying with Reparations

In a party that moves farther Left each day, taking such stances on reparations and other radical proposals might please many Democratic voters, but how will those positions play in a general election?

Would most Americans choose to elect a president who wants to give money to people today for horrible sins committed a century and a half ago? Does that even make sense?

Beto seems to have concluded that it does.

If he becomes the 2020 nominee, it will be interesting to see what President Donald Trump says in response.

We’ll make the popcorn.

This piece originally appeared in The Political Insider and is used by permission.

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