Georgetown students vote overwhelmingly to approve fee for slavery reparations

Georgetown University students voted overwhelmingly on Thursday in favor of creating a $27.20 tuition increase to benefit the descendants of slaves sold by the university in the 1800s. 

More than 66 percent of the student body voted in favor of the increase, which would be steered into a reparation fund for descendants of slaves the institution sold to pay off debts. The resolution must still be approved by the university to go into effect.

The university sold 272 slaves in 1838 to pay off debt, saving the school. Georgetown has a memorial for the slaves sold and offers admissions preference for their descendants.

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The move by the university comes as politicians, notably several 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, have proposed ideas of reparations for slavery. Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerDemocrats urge administration to automatically issue coronavirus checks to more people Democrats ask EPA, Interior to pause rulemaking amid coronavirus Politicians mourn the death of Bill Withers MORE (D-N.J.) this week introduced legislation to study granting reparations to African-Americans.

Fellow 2020 candidates Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisIs Texas learning to love ObamaCare? Democrats ask EPA, Interior to pause rulemaking amid coronavirus Politicians mourn the death of Bill Withers MORE (D-Calif.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenOvernight Health Care: CDC recommends face coverings in public | Resistance to social distancing sparks new worries | Controversy over change of national stockpile definition | McConnell signals fourth coronavirus bill Democratic senators want probe into change of national stockpile description Democrats ask EPA, Interior to pause rulemaking amid coronavirus MORE (D-Mass.), as well as former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), have also signaled willingness to look into the issue further.