Slavery reparations hearing on Capitol Hill

The debate over what the U.S. owes slave descendants heats up.
4:49 | 06/19/19

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Transcript for Slavery reparations hearing on Capitol Hill
Big discussions are happening today on a hot button topic a centuries old debate. One reparations a house judiciary subcommittee. Holding the first hearing in more than a decade to discuss the impact on descendants of four million Africans enslaved. And discriminated against in the United States of America. Actor Danny Glover award winning author of the popular essay the case for reparations Tallahassee coats are making appearances I want to bring in Matthew man. Who's right there at the hearing. Matthew good to see you can you just explain to us why this hearing is so monumental. Kimberly this hearing basically is so monumental namely. Because this is the first time you know since 2007 the congress is not had a hearing. On reparations. On more than twelve years and at issue at this particular hearing is a bill proposed. Sheila Jackson Lee which would create any commission on slavery examining. Carl and this is a they shoot down a number of suites many candidates have already weighed and home from senators Elizabeth Warren. Kamal harassing that they support. The idea of this condition. Two presidential hopefuls Bernie Sanders who says that you know. Writing a check simply cutting a check to African Americans is not nearly enough. Issues financial and economic disparity. Now we did here yesterday from the senate majority leader Mitch McConnell who voiced blunt opposition. To the idea reparations taking the salukis. My vehicle. Do feel. Slavery. President. No one. Responsible. I'll save for a first look at three of our hero who. So very interesting comment there Matt why do you think this discussion is so controversial because it is. Kimberly clearly a lot of carrying. This is viewpoints on. You've got a number. This sane. Great idea reparations. And congress can. There is clear division her right there. Mitch McConnell. Seeing. Give reparations to the number of countless. Things slave. This hearing and CDC were also expecting up to hear from. Author. Casey left. He. Very strong voice on. You hear a call from the color purple he's been. Goodwill and passenger on this. Bumper issues of civil rights and racial discrimination. He's just start. Conversation. All right Matthew name banner right there on the hill thank you so much for joining us thank you -- I on this thank you. And we are and we mentioned Taina house because several times there so here's part of his powerful opening statement take a look. Majority leader McConnell cited civil rights legislation yesterday as well he stood. Because he was alive to witness the harassment jailing and betrayal of those responsible for that legislation. Our governments want to protect them. He was alive for the red lining of Chicago and being a black homeowners of some four billion dollars. Victims of that blunt and very much alive today. I am shortly double word the majority leader. What they know. This committee must know is that while emancipation. Dead bolts at the duel against the bandits of America. Jim Crow which the windows wide open. And that is the thing about senator McConnell is something. It was a 150 years ago. It was right now.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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