Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell came under fire for his ancestors’ alleged history of slave ownership, but he’s not the only lawmaker being accused of having family ties to slavery.
McConnell, who recently rejected the idea of paying reparations to descendants of slaves, is reportedly the great-great-grandson of slave-owners, according to NBC News, citing census records.
“I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago, when none of us currently living are responsible, is a good idea,” he said in June. “We’ve 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.”
McConnell on Tuesday compared himself to former President Barack Obama on reparations and ties to slavery.
“I find myself once again in the same position as President Obama. We both oppose reparations and we both are the descendants of slave owners,” he said. He did not clarify if he knew about the family slave ownership in question before NBC’s report emerged.
Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris’s lineage, however, has also faced scrutiny when it comes to slave ownership.
Her father, Donald, wrote in an article published in January for Jamaica Global that he was related to prominent 18th-century slave-owner Hamilton Brown. (RELATED: Harris, Near Tears, Rips Into Joe Biden On Busing)
The veracity of the claim, however, has not been confirmed. Snopes rated it as “unproven” because it was “unable to verify that a line of descent exists between the modern-day Harris family and the 19th-century slave owner.”
“My roots go back, within my lifetime, to my paternal grandmother Miss Chrishy (née Christiana Brown, descendant of Hamilton Brown who is on record as plantation and slave owner and founder of Brown’s Town) and to my maternal grandmother Miss Iris (née Iris Finegan, farmer and educator, from Aenon Town and Inverness, ancestry unknown to me),” Donald Harris wrote.
The California senator does not directly oppose reparations, like McConnell does.
She supported a bill that called for the study of reparation proposals, and pointed out the centuries of slavery in America, in addition to segregation and Jim Crow laws.
Harris’s and McConnell’s offices have not responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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