The highest ranking African-American member of Congress has major problems with two prominent ideas to address racial disparities in the economy: one that comes from his fellow Democrats and another championed by a Republican African-American senator from his home state.
In an interview, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn teed off on both reparations and “opportunity zones,” complaining that the former is impractical and the latter is unhelpful.
“I think pure reparations would be impossible to implement,” said Clyburn, D-Columbia. “But we can deal with the issue (of racial inequality) if we just admit, first of all, that it exists and then come up with some straightforward ways to deal with it.”
Clyburn was more blunt about new “opportunity zones,” an initiative U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., pushed to include in the 2017 tax overhaul. It gives tax breaks to developers investing in low-income communities.