Counting Blacks as 3/5? OK by Glenn Beck

Founding Fathers had abolition in mind, says pundit
By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 15, 2009 9:13 PM CST
scared of brown people   (Wikimedia Commons)

(Newser) – Glenn Beck today put his spin on a provision in the US Constitution that once counted slaves as three-fifths of a person, painting it as a tool by which Northern abolitionists meant eventually to outlaw the practice. An African-American caller took issue with Beck’s reliance on the founding fathers, reminding him that many owned slaves, and had inserted the three-fifths measure. Beck’s response:

“Do you know who wanted slaves to be counted as a full person? … Slave owners. … The reason why they wanted that is because of the balance of power,” Beck said in what Alex Seitz-Wald calls “another example of Beck distorting history to fit his contemporary agenda.” “The South could control the numbers in Congress. Their representation would go through the roof. … That’s why, in the Constitution, African-Americans were deemed three-fifths people, because the Founders wanted to end slavery and they knew if the South could count slaves as full individuals you would never get the control to be able to abolish it.”

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