President Trump announced Tuesday morning on the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment that he will grant a full pardon posthumously to Susan B. Anthony, a women’s suffragist icon who was arrested after violating male-only voting laws in 1872.
“Later today, I will be signing a full and complete pardon for Susan B. Anthony. She was never pardoned. Did you know that? She was never pardoned,” Trump said during a White House event joined by First Lady Melania Trump, female Trump Administration officials and female leaders of prominent conservative woman’s groups.
“She was guilty for voting,” Trump continued, “And we’re going to be signing a full and complete pardon. And I think that’s really fantastic. She deserves it.”
In 1872, Anthony was arrested after voting in the presidential election from her hometown of Rochester, New York. She was charged with “knowingly, wrongfully and unlawfully” voting and was convicted by an all-male jury in 1873 and was ordered to pay a $100 fine. Anthony never paid the $100 fine or served jail time, according to the House Office of the Historian and authorities declined to take further action.
Anthony died in 1906, and the 19th Amendment, which is known as the Susan B. Anthony Amendment was ratified 14 years later.
At the event on Tuesday, Trump signed a proclamation recognizing the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment and touted women’s contribution in society, saying “women dominate the United States.”
“On this day in 1920, the United States ratified the 19th amendment. It was a monumental victory for equality, for justice, and a monumental victory for America,” Trump said. “Today, a record-breaking 131 women are serving in Congress, nearly 70 million women vote in elections, 56% of our nation’s college students are women, more than 11 million women own successful businesses. In other words, women dominate the United States. I think we can say that very strongly.”
The Susan B. Anthony List, a pro-life political organization said in a statement the group is “deeply moved and grateful” to the president for “honoring the legacy of this great American hero.”
Trump first teased the news to reporters on Monday, saying that he would pardon someone “very, very important,” only adding the pardon would not be for former national security adviser Michael Flynn or Edward Snowden.