Critics of Trump’s ‘Lynching’ Term for Impeachment Ignore Its Origins, History

Democrats slam president based on a limited view…

Top House Democrats Says Fellow Members Using Racist 'Dog Whistles' Against Him

James Clyburn/Photo by Center for American Progress (CC)

(Liberty Headlines) President Donald Trump on Tuesday compared the Democratic-led impeachment investigation into his handling of U.S. policy toward Ukraine to a “lynching.”

The highest-ranking African American in Congress warned Trump about making the comparison, recalling a period of U.S. history in which the practice was used against blacks in the late 19th century.

The definition of “lynching” from Brittanica cites its origins, however:

Lynching, a form of violence in which a mob, under the pretext of administering justice without trial, executes a presumed offender, often after inflicting torture and corporal mutilation. The term lynch law refers to a self-constituted court that imposes sentence on a person without due process of law. Both terms are derived from the name of Charles Lynch (1736–96), a Virginia planter and justice of the peace who, during the American Revolution, headed an irregular court formed to punish loyalists.


By comparing his possible impeachment to a lynching, Trump also likened Democrats to a lynch mob. It was Democrats who dominated the Ku Klux Klan and therefore were mostly responsible for lynchings in the American south at the turn of the century.

Under pressure over impeachment, blowback over his Syria policy and other issues, the Republican president tweeted Tuesday: “So some day, if a Democrat becomes President and the Republicans win the House, even by a tiny margin, they can impeach the President, without due process or fairness or any legal rights.

“All Republicans must remember what they are witnessing here – a lynching. But we will WIN!”

House Majority Whip Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., criticized Trump’s word choices.

“That is one word no president ought to apply to himself,” Clyburn said — ignoring his own party’s history — on CNN after the president’s tweet was read to him. “That is a word that we ought to be very, very careful about using.”

Rep. Bobby Rush, D-Ill., called on Trump to delete the tweet.

“Do you know how many people who look like me have been lynched, since the inception of this country, by people who look like you. Delete this tweet,” wrote Rush, who is also black.

Trump’s tweet came a day after he lashed at critics of his decision — since rescinded — to schedule a major international economic summit for 2020 at one of his Florida golf properties.

A whistleblower’s complaint that Trump was attempting to use his office for personal political gain during a July 25 phone conversation with Ukraine’s president led House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to open the impeachment inquiry.

Trump insists he did nothing wrong. He has characterized the conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy as “perfect” and argues that sore-loser Democrats are still trying to overturn the 2016 election that put him in the White House and keep him from winning a second term next year.

Adapted from reporting  by Associated Press.