House Democrats repeatedly cited the Founding Fathers Wednesday morning as they made their final case for President Donald Trump’s impeachment.
While progressives have recently argued that Americans should re-examine the legacy of its founders, Democrats in Washington D.C. have embraced the founding fathers to rally support for impeachment. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi claimed the mandate of the Constitution when she initially opened the impeachment inquiry, and Democrats mentioned the founders several times throughout the morning. (RELATED: The Tide Is Turning Against Democrats On Impeachment)
“Madam speaker, 232 years ago, as he walked out of the constitutional convention in Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin stated that the Founders had just created a republic, if you can keep it,” House Rules Committee Chair Jim McGovern said.
Franklin owned several slaves throughout his life, but was a popular figure among House Democrats Wednesday. Pelosi herself repeated Franklin’s famous slogan, and recited the Pledge of Allegiance on the House Floor Wednesday. (RELATED: Nancy Pelosi Claims Democrats Dan McCready Actually Won In North Carolina)
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi began impeachment debate on the House floor by reading the Pledge of Allegiance.
— CNN (@CNN) December 18, 2019
“Very sadly now, our founders’ vision of a republic is under threat from actions from the White House,” Pelosi said.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler also cloaked himself in the Founders’ legacy when explaining his support for the two articles of impeachment.
“When [Pres. Trump] demanded that a foreign government target his domestic political rival, he took steps to corrupt our next election,” Nadler said. “To the Founders, these offenses clearly merited removal from office.”
Other House Democrats followed suit, arguing that the founders would have found impeachment imperative in this situation.
“We must honor the nation that our Founders envisioned and impeach this President for violating the law and betraying the American people,” Democratic California Rep. Mark DeSaulnier said.
“George Washington in his farewell address to the nation counseled America that the Constitution is sacredly obligatory upon all,” House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries of New York said. “It is in that spirit that we proceed today.”
Washington and his wife Martha owned over 100 slaves in the 18th century, which has led some on the left to call for George Washington University in Washington, D.C. to change its name. Progressives in recent years have slammed the founding fathers for, among other things, having owned slaves, but Democrats on Capitol Hill have not been reluctant to embrace their legacy as the House impeached a president Wednesday night for the third time in U.S. history.