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Booker introduces bill to form reparations study commission


Booker had previously announced that he would be filing legislation, arguing that some of the country's "bedrock domestic policies" have "systematically excluded blacks." 
 
"This bill is a way of addressing head-on the persistence of racism, white supremacy, and implicit racial bias in our country. It will bring together the best minds to study the issue and propose solutions that will finally begin to right the economic scales of past harms and make sure we are a country where all dignity and humanity is affirmed," Booker said in a statement earlier this week. 
 
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Booker's office said on Tuesday evening that the Democratic senator, who is a member of the Judiciary Committee, had formally filed the bill. 
 
Booker's legislation mirrors a bill introduced in the House by Rep. Sheila Jackson LeeSheila Jackson LeeDemocrats debate timing and wisdom of reparations vote House panel approves bill to set up commission on reparations Race debate grips Congress MORE (D-Texas). It would, if passed, form a commission to study the "impact of slavery and continuing discrimination against African-Americans" and make recommendations on reparation proposals for descendants of slaves.
 
The issue of reparations has become a topic of debate in the Democratic presidential primary.
 
Several 2020 candidates, including Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisBiden, Harris commend Mondale in paving the way for female VP Overnight Energy: Treasury creates hub to fight climate change through finance | Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez introduce 'Green New Deal for Public Housing' | Harris: Americans able to 'breathe easier and sleep better' under Biden MORE (D-Calif.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersOvernight Energy: Treasury creates hub to fight climate change through finance | Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez introduce 'Green New Deal for Public Housing' | Don't attack Zoom for its Bernie Sanders federal tax bill Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez introduce 'Green New Deal for Public Housing' MORE (I-Vt.), pledged last week while speaking at the National Action Network convention that they would sign a bill forming a reparation study commission if they win the White House next year.