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Meacham: America Was Founded to Protect Slavery

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The always hyperbolic presidential historian Jon Meacham made an appearance on MSNBC’s Hardball Tuesday, where he weighed in on President Trump’s description of his treatment throughout the impeachment inquiry as a “lynching.” After trashing President Trump as a racist, Meacham proceeded to trash the entire country as racist dating all the way back to its founding: “This is a country that was founded to…in many ways protected slavery is as an institution and after a century after Appomattox, we enforced apartheid in my part of the world and it’s only been gone as far it’s been gone for half a century, just over half a century.” Later, Meacham compared the testimony of diplomat William Taylor to the testimony of Richard Nixon’s White House Counsel John Dean during the Watergate hearings. According to Meacham, “this is like when John Dean testified in 1973…This is like when the smoking gun tape came out, the transcript which remember and you know well it wasn’t until the very end of a 26-month process that Republicans finally abandoned Nixon.” Meacham spent the rest of his appearance on Hardball scolding people who dared to question the testimony of Taylor: “there’s a great moral and constitutional test confronting the Republican Party at this hour, which is are you going to believe the testimony of a career civil servant who has no conceivable agenda that I could detect…and has laid out a classic test of whether we believe in the rule of law and we honor the framers?” With a detectable snark in his voice, Meacham asked “Why is it that conservatives are so in love with the Federalist Papers except when it comes to this?” Host Chris Matthews, who agreed wholeheartedly with Meacham’s analysis, attempted to downplay concerns about civil servants going rogue by explaining that General Douglas MacArthur was a civil servant; noting “a lot of people are unelected. That doesn’t make them bad.”

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