A spat between Donald Trump and civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis has been dominating headlines recently. Lewis publicly stated that he wouldn’t attend Friday’s inauguration, as he felt Trump was an “illegitimate president.” He also claimed that “it will be the first one that I’ve missed” — a claim proven to be untrue.
As a Washington Post article published in 2001 reminds us, Lewis and other members of the Congressional Black Caucus boycotted George W. Bush’s inauguration because they didn’t “believe Bush is the true elected president.”
At this point, it’s becoming clear that you need a (D) next to your name to be considered a “legitimate” president by John Lewis.Such statements at at odds with comments he made less than a year ago in defense of Barack Obama.
In an interview with CNBC’s John Harwood last year, Harwood asked “…you hear some Republicans say, “Hey, this president promised to bring the country together but he’s actually made it more divided by how he has governed.” What do you say to that?”
Lewis replied, “I think Obama’s been treated differently because of his race. I really believe that. You wouldn’t hear, with a white Democrat or white Republican speaking, someone holler out, “You lie.” You wouldn’t have a governor putting her finger in the face of a white president like the governor of Arizona did. There have been visible signs of disrespect for the man. And I’ve always said if you don’t respect the man, respect the position.Unless the person in that position is a Republican, apparently.
[Note: This post was authored by Matt Palumbo. Follow him on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]