Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson said that her comments on race during Tuesday night’s CNN debate stood out due to the “passion” with which she addressed the issue.
Williamson earned applause and cheers during the CNN debate when she defended her plan to offer $200 billion to $500 billion in reparations to the descendants of enslaved Africans in this country. Williamson, the only candidate on the stage to offer a specific financial proposal on reparations, called the funding plan “politically feasible” and “a debt that is owed.”
“We need to recognize when it comes to the economic gap between black and whites in America, it does come from a great injustice that has never been dealt with,” she said Tuesday.
When asked on Wednesday by CNN’s Brooke Baldwin on “Newsroom” why she believed her answer resonated, Williamson replied that it was “because of what I said, because I feel strongly that we have to have a deeper conversation than the political establishment is having about a lot of issues, and race is one of them.”
“I think it was how I said it,” she said, adding that “once you have the ‘what you’re saying,’ the passion comes along with it.”
When considering the United States’ history of slavery and violence against African Americans, “passion kind of comes along pretty naturally, once you really look at the facts and put the dots together,” she added.
When pressed by Baldwin as to how she would fund the plan, Williamson said that between repealing the 2017 tax cut, positioning the federal government to “negotiate with big pharma,” and establishing “the middle class tax cut,” a $15 minimum hourly wage, a 3% tax on billionaires and 2% tax on those earning $50 million or more, “you start having some cash on hand.”
Williamson, who gained fame as a spiritual adviser to Oprah Winfrey and author of books such as “A Return to Love,” trails far behind her rivals in the polls but has found a following with her unorthodox candidacy.
CNN’s Fredreka Schouten and Veronica Rocha contributed to this report.