U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn says affirmative action has been a form of reparations for slavery and the people working to erode affirmative action today are much like those who took the "40 acres and a mule" away from freed former slaves after the Civil War, according to a story posted on the Slate.com website.

Clyburn, who has represented South Carolina's 6th Congressional District for 11 terms and handily beat back a primary challenge early this month, was interviewed by Slate's David Weigel, who asked Clyburn what he thought of Ta-Nehisi Coates' recent cover story in the Atlantic, "The Case for Reparations."

Clyburn told Weigel he was just finishing up reading the article.

"Most people are asked this question and get it wrong," Clyburn said. "Most people believe that when the former slaves were granted 40 acres and a mule-most people believe they got it. They never got it. Congress, by law in 1872, made sure they never got 40 acres and a mule. That was a part of reparations, so the country has never committed itself to righting the wrongs committed on the slaves."

Read the full story here: http://j.mp/1m0TrKD