For the first time in the Chicago mayoral race, all six candidates were gathered under one roof Wednesday night for a debate.

Some rare barbs were exchanged when candidates were asked about reparations for the descendants of slaves.

Rahm Emanuel, the far-and-away front-runner in the race, said that he supported the idea in theory — all the candidates did. But he added, “I think we have to be honest and frank with ourselves, we have a budget deficit that also needs to be addressed.”

That caveat rankled rival candidate and community activist Patricia Van Pelt-Watkins.

“When I hear Rahm Emanuel talking about a budget deficit when we’re talking about reparations, to me that’s offensive,” Watkins said. “This country was built on our backs, the backs of our ancestors. They bled, they died, they came in chains and they died in pain. So don’t talk to me about budget deficits right now. Not on this subject.”

Watch the video below and comment.

[via Huffington Post]