Politics Can Biden close the racial wealth gap?
Biden budget to run $1.8T deficit to finance spending plans
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's $6 trillion budget proposal for next year would run a $1.8 trillion federal government deficit despite a raft of new tax increases on corporations and high-income people designed to pay for his ambitious spending plans. Biden had already announced his major budget initiatives, but during a rollout Friday, he will wrap them into a single proposal to incorporate them into the government's existing budgetBiden had already announced his major budget initiatives, but during a rollout Friday, he will wrap them into a single proposal to incorporate them into the government's existing budget framework, including Social Security and Medicare.
WASHINGTON — President Biden vowed on Tuesday to close the vast and persistent difference between the assets of Black and white Americans. That racial wealth gap stems from injustices going back to the era of slavery and is reflected today in factors like home valuation (for whites) and access to credit ( for Black-owned businesses).
In all, the racial wealth gap was recently estimated by the Duke economist William Darity Jr. to stand at. Biden has offered nowhere near that amount, instead introducing a raft of proposed programs, such as $31 billion for small-business development and $10 billion for infrastructure upgrades in communities that had been neglected by Washington for generations.
Social spending, business tax hike drive $6T Biden budget
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's $6 trillion budget proposal for next year would run a $1.8 trillion federal government deficit despite a raft of new tax increases on corporations and high-income people designed to pay for his ambitious spending plans. Biden had already announced his major budget initiatives, but during a rollout Friday he will release them as a single proposal to incorporate them into the government's existing budgetBiden had already announced his major budget initiatives, but during a rollout Friday he will release them as a single proposal to incorporate them into the government's existing budget framework, including Social Security and Medicare.
Biden discussed the proposals in remarks after touring Greenwood, the Tulsa, Okla., neighborhood once known as Black Wall Street. The area waswho killed as many as 300 people. They also destroyed 1,256 buildings. The attack, and , served to reinforce white supremacy in the wake of the Civil War and suppress the development of a Black middle class.
“It was a massacre,” Biden said as he toured the Greenwood Cultural Center on Tuesday afternoon. In, the president quoted the Irish poet Seamus Heaney, telling his audience — which — that the nation may be in one of those rare moments when, , “hope and history can rhyme.”
The Tulsa Massacre and a case for reparations: 5 Things podcast
On today's podcast: An economics professor discusses what reparations could fix for people whose lives were upended by the Tulsa Massacre. Professor Logan also explains how different historic economic injustices have lingering effects on today's society and our country's overall economic well being. Hit play on the podcast player above and read along with the transcript below. Claire Thornton: Hey there, I'm Claire Thornton and this is Five Things. It's Sunday, May 30th. The Sunday episodes are special. We're giving you more from in-depth stories you may have already heard.
Great nations, Biden said, “come to term with their dark sides. And we are a great nation.” He said he had come to Tulsa to “fill the silence.”
Greenwood has only recently entered the national consciousness as a grotesque symbol of racial violence, as well as of racism’s lingering effects. The district never truly recovered from the massacre, and attempts at urban renewal — such as the construction of a freeway —in Tulsa.
Biden now wants to reverse decades of. Although some of his proposals, like the infrastructure and business development funds, require the passage of his American Jobs Plan by a bitterly (and narrowly) divided Congress, others do not.
Is Black homeownership in America better than 100 years ago? Well, it's complicated.
The gap in homeownership between Blacks and whites is actually worse than it was in 1920. One expert explains why.Compare that to home-buying rates in 1920. Then, just a year before the Black neighborhood of Greenwood was destroyed, owning a home was much more difficult for everyone (regardless of race) – down payments of 50% were common and repayment was typically expected within 10 years. And still, the gap in homeownership between Blacks and whites was lower at that time than it is today by nearly 5 percentage points.
“We must find the courage to change the things we know we can change,” Biden said in Tulsa.
The president instructed the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development to focus on “countering housing practices with discriminatory effects.” Those practices have recently come under scrutiny, with historians uncovering theof the Federal Housing Administration and other federal agencies that helped create the postwar white middle class while depriving Black Americans of the same upward mobility.
The result is that today, a house in a Black neighborhood is worth 23 percent less than a similar house in a similar neighborhood occupied by whites. That difference amounts to $48,000 per house, or $156 billion nationwide,.
Ben Carson, who directed the federal housing department under President Donald Trump,when it came to housing discrimination.
The inability to buy a home has relegated many Black Americans to renting, preventing them from building equity that can be passed on to descendants. It can also leave them at the whim of landlords.and many other cities have recently seen a wave of pandemic-related evictions, which have been .
Biden puts national spotlight on 100th anniversary of Tulsa Race Massacre
President Joe Biden is visiting Oklahoma on Tuesday to mark the 100th anniversary of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre and will meet with survivors of "Black Wall Street." The president will meet with survivors of the domestic terror attack during his visit to Tulsa on Tuesday, as well as deliver remarks and tour the Greenwood Cultural Center. There, Biden will announce new policies to combat the racial wealth gap and reinvest federal funds in communities.
Biden also pledged that the federal government would devote $100 billion in contracts to minority-owned businesses. White-owned businessesin securing such contracts in the past.
The aspects of his wealth gap proposal that will need approval from Congress include $10 billion for “community-led civic infrastructure projects”; $15 billion for transportation upgrades; $5 billion for affordable housing, as well as, separately, a tax credit for developers of such housing; and $31 billion for small businesses.
The plan unveiled on Tuesday came just as Biden departed for Tulsa and was framed as a necessary step in a broader national recognition of racial iniquity. “The destruction wrought on the Greenwood neighborhood and its families was followed by laws and policies that made recovery nearly impossible,” said a White House press release announcing the wealth gap initiatives, noting that “the disinvestment in Black families in Tulsa and across the country throughout our history is still felt sharply today.”
During the presidential campaign, Biden drew criticism forabout the bygone days of congressional bipartisanship, when he, as a young senator, could work with unrepentant segregationists like James Eastland on certain issues.
NAACP president: Biden’s plan to tackle racial wealth gap must address student debt crisis
Biden will announce plans to address racial wealth disparities while marking centennial of Tulsa massacre US President Joe Biden tours the Greenwood Cultural Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma on June 1, 2021. - US President Joe Biden traveled Tuesday to Oklahoma to honor the victims of a 1921 racial massacre in the city of Tulsa, where African American residents are hoping he will hear their call for financial reparations 100 years on.
As president, however, Biden, framing many of his proposals as a means to redress the depredations of the past. Aboard Air Force One on the way to Tulsa, principal deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the wealth gap proposals were part of what she described as Biden’s broader goal of “advancing equity and racial justice across the whole of federal government.”
Apart from the new wealth-gap measures, that has includedto Black farmers and about “the consequences of slavery, and the significant contributions of Black Americans to our society.”
Notably, student loan forgivenessproposed by the president on Tuesday, though that canceling student debt would help close the very racial wealth gap that Biden has now promised to address.
Neither was anything resembling outright reparations for the descendants of the enslaved. The call for racial reparations has grown louder in recent years,, having gained popular support and other intellectuals.
The White House has said thatbut the president has never endorsed the issue outright.
Yet reparations are the preferred means of racial redress for some, including Darity, the Duke economist. He has endorsed cash payments, arguing that “incremental measures will not be sufficient to address the enormous racial wealth disparity.”
Democrat wins big in N.M. as national political environment remains unchanged
First Read is your briefing from "Meet the Press" and the NBC Political Unit on the day's most important political stories and why they matter.That’s higher than President Biden’s 23-point victory over Donald Trump in the congressional district last year, and higher than former Rep. Deb Haaland’s, D-N.M., 16-point margin when she won re-election. (Haaland is now Biden’s Interior secretary, and her resignation from Congress triggered Tuesday’s special election in New Mexico's First Congressional District.
Biden’s proposed measures go well beyond those of previous administrations, but they are not enough for those who say that Biden cannot merely recognize the enormity of the problem without offering a solution commensurate with that problem’s size.
Writing in the Root, a news outlet devoted to Black affairs, the critic Michael Harriot — who tussledduring the Democratic presidential primary in 2019 — offered that Biden’s proposals “won’t fix a single problem.”
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