A number of 2020 Democrats were in New Orleans this weekend to attend the Essence Festival in New Orleans, where they made their case to the largely African-American audience. California Senator Kamala Harris announced a $100 billion plan to reduce racial disparities in homeownership by helping black buyers secure homes in historically redlined areas where they were previously denied loans by banks. Harris also says she will work to pass better protections against housing discrimination and for changes to calculate credit scores more fairly.
Meanwhile, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren unveiled a plan that would require federal contractors to diversify their hiring and pay women of color equally. Warren also vowed to diversify the federal government’s own workforce and increase small business loans for people of color.
Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg—who is facing questions by his own constituents about his record on policing and racism in South Bend—also announced a plan to invest in small businesses owned by people of color. Buttigieg also said he would sign off on a House bill to study the question of reparations for slavery, which is likely to be a key issue for black voters in 2020.