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Anthony wouldn’t want Trump’s pardon, local leaders say

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On the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, President Donald Trump announced that he would pardon suffragist Susan B. Anthony, who was convicted of illegally voting in the 1872 presidential election and fined $100.

But local leaders said that Anthony herself wouldn’t want the pardon.

“I think it’s about respect,” Deborah Hughes, president and CEO of the Susan B. Anthony Museum and House, said during a news conference Tuesday marking the 19th Amendment’s anniversary. “If you want to know what Susan B. Anthony thought about being pardoned, let’s ask her.”

President Ulysses S. Grant pardoned the three elections commissioners who had been convicted of registering Anthony and a handful of other women to vote, and at that time Anthony also had a chance to receive a pardon, Hughes explained.

“She did not want to be pardoned,” Hughes said.

The best way to honor Anthony and other suffragists is by ensuring that every person in the United States has access to the ballot box, “and by participating in our democracy,” Hughes said.



Speaking at the news conference, which was held at Anthony’s house on Madison Street, Mayor Lovely Warren said the pardon should be rescinded because Anthony didn’t want it.

“She did what she thought was the right thing to do to make sure that women, people of color, and everyone in our society has access to the ballot box,” Warren said.

Anthony would become the 26th person to be pardoned by Trump. Previous recipients of his pardons include Lewis “Scooter” Libby — a former aide to Vice President Dick Cheney who was sentenced to prison for interfering with an investigation into a CIA leak — and Joe Arpaio, the former sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona, who was convicted on a contempt-of-court charge for disregarding a court order demanding his department stop using racial profiling to conduct immigration crackdowns.

Jeremy Moule is CITY's news editor. He can be reached at jmoule@rochester-citynews.com.

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