Vice President Kamala Harris: We must 'speak truth' about history of racism in America

BEN GITTLESON
·1 min read
Vice President Kamala Harris: We must 'speak truth' about history of racism in America

Vice President Kamala Harris said in an exclusive interview with ABC's "Good Morning America" that she did not think the United States was a "racist country" but that it was important to "speak the truth" about the role racism has played in the nation's history.

Harris, the first Black vice president, was responding to GOP Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., who on Wednesday night delivered the Republican response to President Joe Biden's address to a joint session of Congress.

PHOTO: Vice President Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi applaud as President Joe Biden addresses a joint session of Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, April 28, 2021. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Vice President Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi applaud as President Joe Biden addresses a joint session of Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, April 28, 2021. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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Scott, the only Black Republican senator, said "America is not a racist country" and took issue with what he called fighting "discrimination with different types of discrimination" and trying "to use our painful past to dishonestly shut down debates in the present."

PHOTO: Sen. Tim Scott walks through the U.S. Capitol before he delivers the Republican response to President Biden's address to Congress, April 28, 2021, in Washington, D.C. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Sen. Tim Scott walks through the U.S. Capitol before he delivers the Republican response to President Biden's address to Congress, April 28, 2021, in Washington, D.C. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

"No, I don't think America is a racist country," she said Thursday morning. "But we also do have to speak truth about the history of racism in our country and its existence today."

Harris said that "we want to unify the country, but not without speaking truth and requiring accountability, as appropriate."

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"These are issues that we must confront, and it doesn't--it does not help to heal our country to unify us as a people to ignore the realities of that," she said.

PHOTO: President Joe Biden fist bumps with Vice President Kamala Harris as Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi claps at the end of his address to the joint session of Congress in the House chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, April 28, 2021. (Caroline Brehman/Pool via Reuters)
PHOTO: President Joe Biden fist bumps with Vice President Kamala Harris as Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi claps at the end of his address to the joint session of Congress in the House chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, April 28, 2021. (Caroline Brehman/Pool via Reuters)

The vice president praised Biden for calling white supremacy terrorism in his speech and noting U.S. intelligence agencies have determined it to be "the most lethal terrorist threat to the homeland today."

Vice President Kamala Harris: We must 'speak truth' about history of racism in America originally appeared on abcnews.go.com