Leahy and Carmichael Discuss Historian Jon Meacham’s New Interpretation of American History


Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast live from Music Row on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – Leahy was joined on the newsmakers line by the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael.

During the second hour, Carmichael and Leahy joked about historian Jon Meacham’s recent appearance on C-SPAN Tuesday evening when he referenced a historic quote by Benjamin Franklin claiming that it was Nancy Pelosi who brought it to the forefront during impeachment. The duo also went on to question Meacham’s recollection of historical events citing his comments on how America was actually founded in 1965 with the implementation of civil rights acts.

Leahy: We are joined now by the original all-star panelist and my good friend for more than 30 years now I think or pretty close to 30 years Crom Carmichael. Good morning Crom.

Carmichael: Michael, how are you, sir?

Leahy: Well, I am delighted to have an opportunity to share some information about our good friend who we’ve never met, Jon Meacham.

Carmichael: Ah-ha! What’s he been up to?

Leahy: Well, Jon Meacham was on C-SPAN last night and he had some very profound things to say. And these were like new things that I hadn’t heard that apparently are in his version of history but not necessarily ours. Here’s what he had to say about the significant contribution that Nancy Pelosi had to make.

Meacham clip: The question is going to be about the great story. Speaker Pelosi made it particularly famous during impeachment. Franklin leaves Independence Hall – or he came into Independence Hall – at the Pennsylvania State House after in September of 1787. And a Philadelphia woman named Mrs. Powel said to him, ‘Mr. Franklin what do we have a public or a monarchy?’ And he said, ‘A republic, madam, if you can keep it.’ This has been the drama of America since that moment. 

Leahy: So Crom I didn’t know. Nobody knew about this famous story apparently until Nancy Pelosi made it famous during impeachment.

Carmichael: Well Nancy Pelosi and Jon Meacham. I guess they are the only two who knew (Leahy laughs) that Franklin said that. Who knew other than perhaps a few other million people? Tens of millions of people.

Leahy: We have a chapter by the way in the Star News Media Digital Guide to the Constitution and Bill of Rights that’s titled A Republic if You Can Keep It. It was published in 2017. Didn’t Neil Gorsuch have a book on this?

Carmichael: Yes he did and it was a wonderful book. A wonderful book that I would encourage all of your listeners and if anybody knows Jon Meacham I would encourage him to read it. (Leahy laughs) It might illuminate his thinking on what exactly that phrase means.

Leahy: That was published long before the impeachment wasn’t it?

Carmichael: (Scoffs) Yes. Oh yes. Yes. It was published right after, I think pretty soon after he ascended to the Supreme Court. I think he wrote that book. It’s a fabulous book. But you know the Wisconsin primaries really play right into this question.

And of course, the liberals are all in a dither because the state Supreme Court in Wisconsin, as well as the US Supreme Court actually ruled that the election laws can only be changed by the representatives of the people. And that the governor of any state doesn’t have the right to unilaterally change the election laws. Who knew?

Leahy: It’s right there in the Constitution.

Carmichael: Yeah. Exactly. It’s truly a sad day when a person of Jon Meacham’s stature is opposed to the rule of law. And that may go back to impeachment too and I’m assuming that based on that quote that you just gave that Jon Meacham thinks that Donald Trump should have been impeached.

Leahy: Wait, there’s more! There’s more Crom. More news. Things that we didn’t know that our good friend Jon Meacham who’ve we’ve never met that lives here in Nashville…

Carmichael: He is a very very well renowned historian.

Leahy: He is.

Carmichael: And that’s why we bring him up from time to time because he is a person of the left. He has stated that a number of times. And so we bring him up to lift him up to expose the left through him for what they are.

Leahy: Last night on C-SPAN I was watching it, and he has a new definition of a date of the founding of America. You probably haven’t heard this before. But thanks to Jon Meacham we have a new definition of when America was founded.

Carmichael: OK.

Meacham clip: We have these problems right now because you know there’s this big debate issue, Steve, about were we founded in 1619 or were we founded in 1776. I have a third nominee. Which is 1965 that in fact the country we are today, the polity we are today didn’t come into being fully until the Voting Rights Act. The Civil Rights Act. And the immigration act of 1965.

Leahy: (Laughs) Oh. How about that! He forgot about 1788-89 when the Constitution was ratified. Forgot about that.

Carmichael: Well yes. And 1619 even The New York Times has admitted that there are so many inaccuracies in it that they don’t even support it anymore. But I guess Jon Meacham does which is unusual for a historian to say there is this great debate. There’s no great debate. There are a few people on the left who are trying to re-write history. But I have my own date on when the country that we know today was founded.

Leahy: I can’t wait to hear it. What’s the date?

Carmichael: As long as we are going to be bouncing ideas around I’m going to go with 1961.

Leahy: OK. And why 1961?

Carmichael: Because that’s when John Kennedy signed an executive order allowing government employees to unionize.

Leahy: Ah-ha!

Carmichael: And I have maintained that the Democrat Party is the party of government now. And its because they get so much money. It’s interesting when you have Mika Brzezinski on Morning Joe say that Trump is promoting hydro-chloroquine that is a generic drug that can be produced for next to nothing and has saved many lives now. We know that.

We know for a fact that it has been used for people who are on death’s door who are alive and well. We know that. We don’t have a scientific double-blind study but we do have plenty of anecdotal evidence that it has saved some people. And Mika Brzezinski is actually claiming that Trump is promoting it for financial reasons but she has zero proof of that.

Leahy: Who needs proof, Crom?

Carmichael: So this is what the left has become. Anytime the left accuses Trump of something is because that’s the way they operate themselves. In this case, Mika Brzezinski with no evidence says that money motivates Trump to do dastardly things.

Well, the Democratic Party gets one and a half billion dollars every two years from government employee unions. So if money motivates people to do dastardly things, what does that one and half a billion dollars do to the Democratic Party? And let me be clear, I’m not attacking government employees. I’m attacking the union folks that run those unions because the Democratic Party is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the public employee unions.

And Nancy Pelosi in order to maintain absolute rule of her caucus all she has to do is pick up the phone and call five people and tell them to primary any Democrats they want to and they are out of the House the next election. And that is not the way the country should work. But it is the way our country works now. And it’s all because of what JFK did in 1961, the founding of our current country.

Leahy: Would you be willing, Crom, I’m going to extend this invitation to Jon Meacham. He may not listen to our program but he lives in Nashville and I’m sure many of his friends listen to our program. Would you be willing to have a discussion about what really was the founding date of America? Was it 1776? Or was it 1965 as he claims?

Carmichael: Let me say this. I’d be happy to have a discussion about the proper role of government and which party does a better job of following that path. I’m not going to get into some kind of a debate with somebody who’s going to quote a few dates (Leahy laughs) and give a few quotes from people and claim that because he quotes more historical figures than I can that he is somehow more brilliant.

And I’m not trying to claim that I’m brilliant, but I listen to him enough to be very very worried. By the way, New York City commercial burglaries in New York City, the city from which he moved are up 75% since the sheltering in place order. And burglaries in grocery stores and bodega’s is up 400%. 400%.

Leahy: Wow.

Carmichael: There is no state in the country that is bluer than New York. And there is no city in the country, but perhaps Chicago (Laughter) which has its own set of problems. There is no city that is bluer than New York City and that’s a place he decided he didn’t want to live in anymore. He moved from a blue state to a red state.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Jon Meachem” by Larry D. Moore. CC BY-SA 4.0.








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