The Senate passed a resolution Thursday calling on the United States to apologize officially for the enslavement and segregation of millions of African-Americans and to acknowledge "the fundamental injustice, brutality and inhumanity of slavery and Jim Crow laws."
The resolution, sponsored with little fanfare by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, passed on a voice vote. It now moves to the House of Representatives, where it may meet an unlikely foe: members of the Congressional Black Caucus.
Several CBC members expressed concerns Thursday about a disclaimer that states that "nothing in this resolution authorizes or supports any claim against the United States; or serves as a settlement of any claim against the United States."
Sen. Roland Burris, D-Ill., the Senate's lone African-American, went to the floor after the Harkin resolution passed and said, "I want to go on record making sure that that disclaimer in no way would eliminate future actions that may be brought before this body that may deal with reparations."