Historians Correct Nikki Haley After George Washington Tweet

Historians in the News
tags: George Washington, Nikki Haley

Former U.S ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley has been criticized on Twitter after she claimed that George Washington presided over drawing up the Constitution during his presidency.

"George Washington turned an army of ragtag troops into an unstoppable force that defeated the British & secured America's independence," Haley tweeted on Monday in celebration of Presidents Day.

"As President, he oversaw the creation of our Constitution & showed the world what it looks like to govern by the people and for the people," the former South Carolina governor said.

As historians on the social media site were quick to point out, the U.S. Constitution was adopted in 1787 and Washington became the nation's first president in 1789.

History professors highlighted the inaccuracies in Haley's post and joked about the number of errors she'd made.

"Historian here, the Constitution created the presidency and not vice versa. But maybe the Continental Army flown into airports managed to reverse time?" wrote Manish Sinha of the University of Connecticut.

Sinha was referring to remarks by former President Donald Trump about troops during the Revolutionary War taking over airports. There were no airplanes or airports in the late 18th century.

Dr. Joanne Freeman, a history professor at Yale, also took exception to Haley's assertions, tweeting: "The Continental army was FAR from an 'unstoppable force.'"

"The Constitution MADE Washington President," Freeman said. "And 'by the people & for the people' is a 19th century democratic view of US gov't in Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Washington did a lot of noteworthy things. But not these."

Princeton historian Kevin M. Kruse struck a more comedic note, sending a reply to Haley saying: "As President, he ... traveled back in time?"

Read entire article at Newsweek

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