Patrick backs reparations in unveiling 'Equity Agenda for Black Americans'

Democratic presidential candidate Deval PatrickDeval PatrickIt’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process Top Democratic super PACs team up to boost Biden Andrew Yang endorses Biden in 2020 race MORE on Monday announced support for developing a reparations program as part of his “Equity Agenda for Black Americans.” 

The agenda released on Martin Luther King Jr. Day also draws on Patrick’s previously released proposals with aims to limit the barriers to wealth and opportunities for black Americans.

“The American Dream remains further out of reach of Black Americans than other Americans, and because of that, America has not fulfilled her promise,” the former Massachusetts governor said in a statement. “In addition to having personally lived the American Dream as an African-American man, what distinguishes me is my demonstrated ability to convert policy proposals into results. That is what I did in Massachusetts as Governor, and that is what I will do as President.”

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Patrick said he supports a plan in which the federal government would provide reparations to living descendants of enslaved African Americans, but added that “reparations without reconciliation are incomplete.” 

Patrick said he backs a resolution introduced by Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants Black lawmakers unveil bill to remove Confederate statues from Capitol Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk MORE (D-N.J.), who dropped out of the 2020 Democratic primary earlier this month, and Rep. Sheila Jackson LeeSheila Jackson LeeMore than 6000 attend George Floyd’s Houston viewing Exclusive investigation on the coronavirus pandemic: Where was Congress? Democrats seek to tap into fury over George Floyd MORE (D-Texas) that would establish a commission to study and development reparation proposals. 

Several 2020 candidates have signaled support for studying the issue of reparations. Long-shot candidate Marianne WilliamsonMarianne WilliamsonMarianne Williamson touts endorsements for progressive congressional candidates The Hill’s 12:30 Report: Warren becomes latest 2020 rival to back Biden The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden looks to stretch lead in Tuesday contests MORE, who dropped out earlier this month, went further than other candidates in proposing a $500 billion plan that would begin payments. 

Patrick’s campaign said on Monday that he “hopes and believes that tangible reparations should be expressed in the form” of other plans he’s proposing as part of his agenda for black Americans. 

Patrick’s agenda aims to close the opportunity gap between black students and their peers by investing in public school teachers, universal pre-k and subsidized early child care. 

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He also is pushing a plan to provide entrepreneurs and small businesses in minority communities access to capital, mentorship and workforce training programs. 

Patrick’s agenda also includes a plan to invest in affordable, quality housing options in communities targeted by redlining and expanding rent-to-own options in public and private housing. 

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The campaign said Patrick will discuss his agenda when speaking Monday at the NAACP King Day celebration at the Dome in South Carolina. 

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