During a town hall on Thursday, 2020 Democratic candidate Julian Castro spoke out about his support of reparations for slave descendants, but CNN host Don Lemon didn’t forget to point out that such a plan could cost taxpayers “trillions.”
The former HUD secretary joined a group of other 2020 candidates who have given their support to the bill. When asked about his reasoning, Castro claimed that he did not believe the issue had ever been fully addressed.
“I believe that we have never fully addressed in this country the original sin of slavery, and that because of that, we have never truly healed as a country,” said Castro.
Castro compared the reparations to paying back people for their property.
“I’ve said if we compensate people under our Constitution if we take their property, why wouldn’t you compensate for people who actually were considered property?”
He then pointed out that although slavery ended hundreds of years ago, there was still a debt to be paid.
“Even though we weren’t there in past generations, we’ve inherited a lot of moral assets, but we’ve also inherited some moral debts. And one of those debts that we’ve never paid is the debt of that original sin.”
However, Lemon pointed out that experts say that there is no way to address the issue without costing taxpayers trillions of dollars. Castro completely sidestepped the question, however, instead saying that he was for recognizing what happened.
Julián Castro on why he supports reparations for slavery: "I believe that we have never fully addressed in this country the original sin of slavery, and that because of that, we have never truly healed as a country.” https://t.co/IxYclHsiEG #CastroTownHall pic.twitter.com/pcn7bgCrfL
— CNN (@CNN) April 12, 2019
“I think what Americans would be okay with is some sort of acknowledgment, first of all, an apology for what happened, and some sort of direct acknowledgment of the pain that was caused,” said Castro.
Castro also claimed that he would support legislation by Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) that suggested forming a commission to research what measures could be taken. However, this bill received widespread criticism from Republicans who called the bill “impossible” to pay for while speaking with HuffPost.
“Essentially a conversation about reparations is just something that’s not even a realistic possibility, so it’s something I don’t think we spend any time conversing on,” Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.) dismissed the notion.