September 30, 2020 - Issue: Vol. 166, No. 170 — Daily Edition116th Congress (2019 - 2020) - 2nd Session
ESTABLISHING A DEPARTMENT OF RECONCILIATION; Congressional Record Vol. 166, No. 170
(House of Representatives - September 30, 2020)
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[Pages H5057-H5058] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] ESTABLISHING A DEPARTMENT OF RECONCILIATION The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Green) for 5 minutes. Mr. GREEN of Texas. And still I rise, Mr. Speaker, in the name of liberty and justice for all. I rise to call to our attention that we saw last night evidence of what happens when one party comes to debate and another party comes to disrupt. We saw a President who did any and everything that he could to avoid debating. And we saw a Vice President who did any and everything that he could to debate. But something more important happened than the disruption. We saw a President who refused to denounce white supremacy and the supremacists. This is not the first time this has happened. A President who refuses to denounce white supremacy and white supremacists should not hold office. Mr. Speaker, I was proud of the Vice President. He indicated that the President of the United States is a racist. Some things bear repeating: The Vice President, former Vice President, indicated that the current President is a racist. By the way, he is not the first person to say so. Many members of the leadership of the House have said so. Other prominent Americans have said so. So it should not surprise anyone that the Record should reflect what has been said. The Vice President went on to say that he wants to do something about racism in this country. That, if elected, he will convene a meeting of persons, prominent persons, law enforcement, and others, to do something about racism, and I am going to add systemic racism. I believe that the Vice President's heart is in the right place, but I also know that convening is not enough. [[Page H5058]] Mr. Vice President, whom I happen to like very much, convening is not enough. It is time for us to turn the talking points associated with racism into action items, and we have done much of that here on the Hill. But there is one thing that we need to do that we have not done in this country that goes back to 1619, and that is, we have not reconciled. We have not reconciled the differences that we have, the racial differences. It is time for reconciliation. To turn this talking point into an action item, Mr. Vice President, I beg that you would establish a department of reconciliation with a secretary of reconciliation who wakes up every morning with the job of eliminating invidious discrimination in all of its forms in this country. It is time for us to deal forthrightly, to deal in an open and notorious manner, with racism and invidious discrimination in this country in all of its various forms. It is time, Mr. Vice President. You are the man. You are the man in the sense that you are the man running for President as the nominee of the Democratic Party. In that sense, you are the person to be more appropriate who can make this happen. We saw a President declare a war on poverty, President Johnson. It is time to declare a war on racism. It is time to end what we are seeing occurring almost on a weekly basis in this country to African Americans, minorities, and women. It is time to have a department of reconciliation. To this end, I will send the Vice President a letter asking him to consider a department of reconciliation. To talk about it is not enough. We have to have the action item. There are many other things that can be done. I don't oppose a task force. I don't oppose opportunities to look at other forms of reconciliation. But a department of reconciliation is the means by which we can formalize and actualize reconciliation in this country. It won't be easy, and it won't happen right away, which is why we need the department of reconciliation. Call it anything that you want, as long as it is about reconciliation. I will contact you, Mr. President. The SPEAKER pro tempore. Members are reminded to refrain from engaging in personalities toward the President. ____________________