Byron Donalds Defends Jim Crow Comments: 'The Black Family Was Together'

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Florida Rep. Byron Donalds (R) is defending his stance on Jim Crow as the time when "the Black family was together," NBC News reports.

Donalds, a Trump campaign surrogate, initially made controversial comments about the Jim Crow Era on Tuesday (June 4) during an outreach event for Black voters in Pennsylvania.

During the campaign event, Donalds suggested that circumstances have worse for Black people because they've embraced Democrats. He then pointed to Jim Crow as an era when "the Black family was together."

“You see, during Jim Crow, the Black family was together. During Jim Crow, more Black people were not just conservative — Black people have always been conservative-minded — but more Black people voted conservatively,” Donalds said.

Donalds further explained his stance during an appearance on MSNBC host Joy Reid's "The ReidOut" on Thursday (June 6).

"I never said that it was better for Black people in Jim Crow," Donalds said.

“Don’t try to impose the fact that the marriage rates were better in the — higher, higher, I want to be clear — higher in the Jim Crow era to mean that I think Jim Crow is great," Donalds continued. "That is a lie. That is gaslighting. I would never say such a thing."

Reid cited how Black people faced restricted rights in the Jim Crow South and called Donalds' comments inaccurate.

"No, I'm not being inaccurate," the Florida Republican said.

"All I was talking about is about Black families," he added.

Congressional Black Caucus and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D) said Donalds' remarks were "an outlandish, outrageous, and out-of-pocket observation."

In response to Donalds' comments, the Biden-Harris campaign said former President Donald Trump “spent his adult life, and then his presidency undermining the progress Black communities fought so hard for — so it actually tracks that his campaign’s ‘Black outreach’ is going to a white neighborhood and promising to take America back to Jim Crow.”

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