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‘They Make It Sound Like America Is a Racist, Broken Country’: Ohio Politician Wants Descendants of White Civil War Soldiers Who Helped Free Enslaved Blacks to Get Reparations 

A Republican Senate candidate from Ohio wants reparations for the descendants of white Civil War soldiers.

Bernie Moreno is challenging the incumbent Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown in the state’s U.S. Senate election in 2024.

Moreno recommends that reparations be paid to the descendants of Northern Civil War soldiers because they “freed slaves” while fighting against the South. The luxury auto dealer from Cleveland made the reparation remarks during his campaign launch in Milford on April 21.

Bernie Moreno
Bernie Moreno wants reparations for descendants of white Civil War soldiers. (Photo: @berniemoreno/Twitter)

“We stand on the shoulders of people like John Adams, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, George Washington,” he said. “This group of people took on the largest empire in history. They said no, we will not stand for this, and won. That same group of people later, white people, died to free Black people.”

Related: Dr. Phil Got Some Nerve’: Talk Show Host Dragged for Saying Monetary Reparations for Black People Would Be an ‘Absolute Disaster’ to Duke University Professor

Moreno went on to say that America isn’t racist because it freed the slaves.

“It’s never happened in human history before, but it happened here in America. That’s not talked about in schools very much, is it? They make it sound like America is a racist, broken country. Name another country that did that, that freed slaves, that died to do that.”

The Senate candidate also said that he understood he wasn’t being “politically correct” in saying that white people died to save the lives of Black people and asked where their reparations are.

“You know, when they talk about reparations, where are the reparations for the people in the North who died to save the lives of Black people?” said Moreno. “I know it’s not politically correct to say that. But you know what? We gotta stop being politically correct, we gotta call it how it is.”

A spokesman for Moreno’s campaign doubled down when asked about the controversial comments made by his boss and accused the media of crying “crocodile tears.”

“Bernie was right when he said political correctness is killing our country,” said Conor McGuinness. “And the crocodile tears from the left expose the Democrat hypocrisy he was referring to in the clip.”

Moreno failed to note that the white soldiers he spoke of were paid wages for their duties during the war. He also failed to note the nearly 180,000 Black soldiers who fought for the Union during the Civil War who were paid less than their white counterparts by nearly 50 percent. Black soldiers were paid $10 per month during the Civil War with a $3 deduction for their clothing. White soldiers were paid $13 per month and were not charged the extra $3 for clothing.

Seventy-seven percent of Black Americans believe reparations should be paid to the descendants of slaves, according to Pew Research Center, while just 18 percent of white Americans believe reparations should be paid.

People reacted to Moreno’s comments on social media, and one called out the Republican motto that the Civil War wasn’t fought to keep slavery but to keep the federal government from interfering in state laws.

“That crazy cause I’ve always heard that the civil war wasn’t fought over slavery at all, so these people didn’t fight to ‘save black people,’” noted one.

“Well, at least we don’t have to wonder where he stands on social justice issues,” added another. “Just another right-wing bigot.”

One user wrote, “Any chance that Bernie Moreno would advocate for reparations for indigenous who had their land stolen by ancestors of the white people he claims are owed reparations?”

Sure. White people have always been neglected in America,” concluded another. “BOY BYE!!!”

Moreno’s comments prompted a resurface of the clip of North Carolina Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson speaking against reparations during the 2021 North Carolina Republican Party State Convention. Robinson said that it was Black folks who owed reparations.

“Why do you owe? Because somebody in those fields took stripes for you. Somebody had to walk through Jim Crow for you,” he said. “Somebody fought wars and died for you. Somebody lived less than because they didn’t have what you have, and they did it for you.”

Incidentally, Moreno came to America as a 5-year-old immigrant from Colombia and campaigned heavily on border security during his Senate primary campaign in 2022 before dropping out.

“President Trump put us on a path to prosperity, but today China’s buying our land, drugs pour through our borders while our tax dollars flow to foreign countries and our jobs stream overseas,” said Moreno in a campaign video. “It takes new leaders who are willing to fight to save the America First values that we share.”

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