Three ex-President’s honoured the Black House lawmaker from Georgia…
The fourth did so by video….
Donald Trump was absent…..
Obama challenged America to carry on the efforts of Lewis and those before him in the struggle to work for the Rights of Americans of all colours, creeds and sex ….
George Bush said that he might have had different politics, but he lives in a better America because of Lewis….
Bill Clinton talked of Lewis being human and pushing past his weaknesses to help others…
President Barack Obama hailed the late Rep. John Lewis as a modern-day founding father of a more perfect union that has not yet come to fruition — and challenged Americans to carry on Lewis’ legacy.
It was the former Democratic president’s most political speech since he left office in 2017, and while he didn’t mention President Donald Trump by name, he offered a stinging rebuke of many of his administration’s actions, particularly on policing and voting rights. Obama also went further than he has in the past in calling for dramatic policy changes, including ending the filibuster in the U.S. Senate and granting residents of Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico full representation in Congress.
In a 40-minute eulogy that was part a celebration of Lewis and part a call to action, Obama chronicled Lewis’ journey as a young civil rights activist to an elderly congressman who led a sit-in inside the U.S. Capitol, evidence that he never stopped fighting for what was right.
“It is a great honor to be back in Ebenezer Baptist Church in the pulpit of its greatest pastor, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., to pay my respects to perhaps his finest disciple, an American whose faith was tested again and again to produce a man of pure joy and unbreakable perseverance: John Robert Lewis,” Obama said.
America, he added, was built by John Lewises, who as much as anyone brought this nation closer to its highest ideals. “And someday, when we do finish that long journey towards freedom, when we do form a more perfect union, whether it’s years from now or decades or even if it takes another two centuries, John Lewis will be a founding father of that fuller, fairer, better America,” Obama said as the crowd rose to its feet in applause.
The former president acknowledged that some people might feel he shouldn’t use his eulogy to dive into politics. “But that’s why I’m talking about it,” he said.
In his remarks, Obama unequivocally endorsed a series of policies on voting, including: passing new voting rights legislation to replace the 1965 law that was gutted by the Supreme Court; automatic voter registration, including for former felons; more polling places; an expansion of early voting; making Election Day a national holiday; guaranteeing citizens in D.C. and Puerto Rico equal representation in the federal government; ending partisan gerrymandering; and, if necessary, eliminating the Senate filibuster, which Obama decried as a “Jim Crow relic.”….
image…Credit…Melissa Golden for The New York Times