Big Government

Big Government

DC Emancipation Day, thanks to the Republican Party

by Michael Zak
April 16, 2010

Republicans would benefit tremendously from appreciating the heritage of our Grand Old Party, founded in 1854 to oppose the Democrats’ pro-slavery, anti-freedom agenda.

As they campaign for the mid-term elections, Republicans should ignore the lefty media spin and recognize that they hold the moral high ground. From the first chapter of Back to Basics for the Republican Party: “How can we expect to convince voters to place their confidence in us when we lack confidence in our own heritage.”

Today, the nation’s capital celebrates Emancipation Day. In his proclamation, the Democrat mayor, Adrian Fenty, omits something very important: the holiday commemorates the Republican Party’s abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia. That’s right, the Republican Party freed the slaves in DC. And yes, the Democratic Party opposed freeing the slaves in DC – a fact which Democrats today dare not mention.

During the Civil War, one of the nation’s leading abolitionists was Senator Henry Wilson (R-MA), who would later serve as Vice President in the Ulysses Grant administration. In December 1861, Senator Wilson introduced a bill to abolish slavery in the District. The measure met with parliamentary obstacles from the Democrats, but Ben Wade (R-OH) outmaneuvered them. Six years later, had the bitterly racist Democrat, Andrew Johnson, been convicted during his impeachment trial, Senator Wade would have become President of the United States.

On April 16, 1862, the Republican-controlled 37th Congress passed Senator Wilson’s bill. Overall, 99% of Republicans voted to free the slaves in the District of Columbia, while 83% of Democrats voted to keep them in chains.

That day, the GOP freed more than three thousand African-Americans. Among them was Philip Reid, who while enslaved had made the statue that stands atop the dome of the U.S. Capitol.

While serving in the U.S. House of Representatives, Abraham Lincoln had sponsored a bill to abolish slavery in Washington, DC. As President, he proudly signed the District of Columbia Emancipation Act, announcing “I have never doubted the constitutional authority of congress to abolish slavery in this District; and I have ever desired to see the national capital freed from the institution.” Emancipation Day finally arrived, thanks to Republican majorities in Congress.


3 Responses to “Big Government”

  1. Wanderant Says:

    This could be the beginning of an important research project that would review the Congresses since 1776 to present day to see exactly what each party accomplished.

    That would be a bestseller on Amazon…not necessarily on the NYT bestseller list, though.

  2. PATRIOT Says:

    Race, race, race that all y’all ever think about. Why can’t we all just be folk?!?

  3. Wanderant Says:

    “Dreams of my Father” & “Audacity of Hope”.


    Reverend Jeremiah Wright.

    ‘Nuff said?

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