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Reuters Finds That House Speaker Mike Johnson Has Ancestral Ties to Slavery

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"Journalists" sure have a lot of time on their hands. This reminds us of the time Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler went through Sen. Tim Scott's family history to check his claim that he went from "cotton to Congress in one lifetime" … but Kessler pointed out that Scott's ancestors owned "unusually large amounts of land." 

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Reuters decided to dig into the ancestry of "some of the most influential politicians of today" to see if it could connect them to slavery. Just wait until they hear about George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.

Does anyone else find it oddly convenient that Reuters chose to focus on House Speaker Mike Johnson and contact his office for a response? "House Speaker Johnson among US politicians with ancestral ties to slavery" reads the headline.

Tom Lasseter writes:

Johnson, who in October was voted speaker of the House, had another personal tie to the issue of reparations: At least three of his direct ancestors were slaveholders. Johnson’s ancestral ties to slavery have not been previously reported.

A Reuters review of his lineage shows that one Johnson forebear, Honore Fredieu, enslaved 14 Black people in Natchitoches, Louisiana, in 1860. Among those listed on that year’s census is a pair of 1-year-old girls whom he enslaved.

Another Johnson ancestor, Amedee Rachal, enslaved four people just a few households away, the 1860 records show. Each of those slaveholders was a great-great-great-great-grandfather of Johnson; their children married each other.

Earlier, in 1830, Amedee Rachal’s father, Cyprian Rachal, enslaved 10 people.

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Reuters also found out that President Joe Biden and at least 100 members of Congress had ancestral ties to slavery. Did they contact Biden for a comment? That seems to be a much bigger story.

The press usually goes after Johnson because he's a dangerous "Christian nationalist." At least Reuters found a new way to do a hit piece on the Republican House Speaker.

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