Genealogist Says Biden’s Ancestors Owned Slaves

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A genealogist says he has found proof that the ancestors of President Joe Biden owned slaves.

Alexander Bannerman and presidential lineage expert Gary Boyd Roberts co-authored the article for the winter 2021 issue of the New England Historic Genealogical Society’s American Ancestors Magazine.

Bannerman told Politico that they discovered that two of Biden’s ancestors enslaved people while living in Maryland on his father’s side.

Jesse Robinett, who is Biden’s great-great-great-grandfather, enslaved two people in Allegany County, according to the 1800 Census. He also says there is evidence that Thomas Randle, who is also Biden’s great-great-great-grandfather, enslaved a 14-year-old boy in Baltimore County in 1850.

Despite his findings, Bannerman insists that Biden’s links to slavery minimal in contrast to many American families.

“Not a lot of ancestors, and not a lot of slaves,” he told Politico.

Biden, who has not responded to the new claims, does not stand alone.

Former President Barack Obama, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and former congressman and Texas Democrat Beto O’Rourke all have ancestors who owned slaves.

McConnell’s two great-great-grandfathers, James McConnell and Richard Daley owned at least 14 slaves in Limestone County, Alabama. According to the county “Slave Schedules” in the 1850 and 1860 censuses, the slaves were male, barring two females.

The Republican has opposed proposals to offer reparations to descendants of slaves.

“I don’t think reparations for something that happened 150 years ago, when none of us currently living are responsible, is a good idea,” he said in 2019 ahead of a House reparations hearing. “We’ve tried to deal with our original sin of slavery by fighting a civil war, by passing landmark civil rights legislation. We’ve elected an African American president.”

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