The American public is no longer just letting politicians get away without actually answering questions. There was an uproar on Twitter after last night’s Democratic debate when former Vice President Joe Biden ignored a question about whether he would support reparations for descendants of slavery.
When the moderator asked Biden if he supported reparations, Biden first said he was happy for the chance to speak on it, then went on a tangent that instead praised the hard work of immigrants.
“Number one, the reason we’re the country we are is because of immigration. We’ve been able to cherry pick the best from every single continent. The people who come here have determination, resilience, they are ready to stand up and work like the devil,” Biden began, the continued by speaking about Hispanic immigrants.
The audience applauded Biden’s total non-answer, but the American public pointed out how distasteful and disrespectful his words were. Ugh. Slaves were “cherry-picked” and were FORCED to “work like the devil” for hundreds of years, but they certainly weren’t immigrants or Hispanics.
It was not the first time Biden failed to answer a question about the topic. In September, Biden also rambled and went off topic when asked about reparations.
But Biden wasn’t the only one conflating answers and dodging direct answers. He was in parallel company with South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who stopped short of saying he would support ACTUAL financial reparations for descendants of slaves.
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When the moderator asked Buttigieg if he would commit to giving financial compensation to immigrant families separated at the border, he responded with an unequivocal yes.
“Are you committing as president to financial compensation for those children,” the moderator asked. “Yes and they should have a fast track to citizenship because what the United Stated did under this president to them was wrong and we have a moral obligation to make right what was broken,” Buttigieg answered without hesitation.
However, when asked if he supported reparations for Black Americans, Buttigieg instead touted his support for H.R. 40, the bill to study reparations.
“Since you do support compensation for those (immigrant) families, should the U.S. also compensate descendants of enslaved people? Do you support reparations for African-Americans,” the moderator asked.
“I support H.R. 40, which is the bill to that has been proposed in Congres to establish a commission to look at reparations, but we shouldn’t wait to do things that are reparative,” Buttigieg said.
Buttigieg continued by doubling down on his statements that the generational wealth of Black Americans has been stolen and suggested investing in Black businesses, HBCUs and more.
He stopped short of saying he would support giving actual financial compensation to families but said reparations should be looked at later down the line.
Buttigieg, nor Biden’s deflections went unnoticed.
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