In his subtle critique of the curriculum, the only Black Republican member of Florida’s congressional delegation gave the DeSantis administration an out.
Rep. Byron Donalds (R-FL) posted a tweet this morning that praised Florida’s new teaching standards for middle-school level Black history before the sophomore lawmaker suggested that the education materials should sorta maybe possibly not include information about “the personal benefits of slavery.”
“That obviously wasn’t the goal & I have faith that FLDOE will correct this,” he concluded.
My colleague Josh Marshall read the curriculum approved last week which includes instruction that argues “slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit.” He published a really thoughtful piece on the ways in which it is problematic even beyond the quote on the personal benefits of slavery, which you should read here.
While Donalds is far from the only junior member of Congress to see his national profile skyrocket in recent months, he has managed to maintain a level of relevance without ever really planting his flag on hot button issues or directly criticizing anyone. And if he does, it doesn’t last long.
Much like this soft DeSantis critique, Donalds only embraced his role as the detractor’s new darling during the speakership fight earlier this year for a few rounds of voting before he changed course and bent the knee to Speaker McCarthy, reportedly in exchange for a committee seat.
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