CNN is known for its fake news, well apparently they’re venturing out into the untapped market of fake history as well. On Sunday afternoon’s CNN Newsroom, anchor Fredricka Whitfield invited historian Doris Kearns Goodwin on the show to discuss her new book as well as current events when she claimed Republicans want to “pull back” the voting rights that Lincoln fought and died for.
After discussing the heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine and how President Biden is handling the situation, Whitfield suggested that Biden should read Goodwin’s book on former President Abraham Lincoln called “Leadership in Turbulent Times.”
She then asked Goodwin “what are you teaching us about how Lincoln handled things?” In response, Goodwin claimed that the “most important lesson that Lincoln provides for us today” is on “the big crisis of — is our democracy in peril?”
She explained that in the early days of the Civil War “the central idea they had to fight was if the minority that loses an election as the south did, could decide to break up the union simply because they wouldn’t accept the peaceful transition of power; it would prove democracy was an absurdity.”
As if comparing the GOP’s support for voter integrity legislation to the south seceding before the Civil War wasn’t crazy enough, Goodwin kept going with her ahistorical analogies:
His last speech was [Lincoln] makes before he dies just a few days before he dies is talking about extending the right to vote to African Americans who had fought in the war. He then loses his life because that speech was where John Wilkes Booth heard him give that speech and decided now it’s time to kill him. And here we are 150 years later and there are people in the country now trying to get the idea that voting rights should be pulled back, rather than pushed forward, people unclear about what happened in that election and claiming that election fairly won was not fairly won. This is the fight we have to be fighting. I think Lincoln would tell him this is your fight right now. Voting rights is central.
I must’ve been sick that day in history class when we learned about how Abraham Lincoln fought for universal vote by mail, early voting and a ban on voter ID. Either that or Doris Kearns Goodwin is fabricating history to fit her political agenda. Something tells me its the latter.
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To read the relevant transcript click “expand”:
3:29:58 PM EST
FREDRICKA WHITFIELD: Perhaps President Biden should be reading your new book now on Abraham Lincoln called “Leadership in Turbulent Times.” I mean what are you teaching us about how Lincoln handled things?
DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN: You know, I think the most important lesson that Lincoln provides for us today is on that larger challenge of the big crisis of — is our democracy in peril? In the first days of the Civil War, he said right then the central idea they had to fight was if the minority that loses an election as the south did, could decide to break up the union simply because they wouldn’t accept the peaceful transition of power it would prove democracy was an absurdity. And that’s why that war had to be fought right from the beginning. And the last speech heHe speaks out about the possibility of granting the vote to African Americans who have fought in wars. John Wilkes Booth then hears him speak that speech in that speech, and decides it is time to end his life. We are now 150 years later, and people are trying to convince the nation that voting rights need to be pulled back. This is what we need to fight. Lincoln would have told him, “This is our fight now.” The centrality of voting rights.