No slavery apology, Ga. speaker says

ATLANTA - - Efforts by Rep. Al Williams, D-Midway, to pass a resolution with the state's official apology for its role in slavery prior to the Civil War hit a major hurdle with news that a key state leader is opposed.
House Speaker David Ralston told an Atlanta public radio station he is against the idea.
Responding to a question on WABE-FM, Ralston said Williams is focused on the wrong direction.
"I'm about looking to the future. I'm not about looking to the past," Ralston said. "When you turn around and look backward, it invites a whole lot of issues, and I think we've got too much work to do, frankly, now to afford to do that."
Williams didn't have any better luck with Ralston's predecessor as the House's presiding officer. The apology never made it out of committee when Glenn Richardson was speaker.
Ralston campaigned for the job following Richardson's resignation with promises of healing and cooperation, leading some apology supporters to speculate that their chances might be improved this year with the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War next year.



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