Marjorie Taylor Greene got an embarrassing fact check on Thursday: Robert E. Lee wasn’t a Founding Father.
While defending an amendment to protect against the removal of monuments depicting the Founding Fathers on federal land, Greene notably lumped in the removal of the Confederate general’s image in Charlottesville as an example of how “Communist Democrats” have attempted to erase U.S. “culture, way of life, and history.”
“Actually, there should be no funds allocated to remove any monument, and there’s no necessary reason to remove the monuments,” Greene said. “This is the Democrats’ and the Biden administration’s effort to erase our history, just as they have done to the statue of Robert E. Lee. This is an outrage.”
Democratic Representative Chellie Pingree wasn’t convinced that the Georgia congresswoman knew her facts, however.
“Just to clear up a couple of things, my colleague mentioned the Founding Fathers. Robert E. Lee was not actually one of the Founding Fathers, he was a general of the Confederacy,” Pingree said.
The Maine Democrat also said she found it “rich” that the party focused on “book banning in our libraries, rewriting curriculum, not talking about our history over and over again, is the very one that is saying that we have to often keep painful monuments in places where they do damage, where they interfere with people’s ability to enjoy the particular area that they’re in.”
Nearly 80 percent of Confederate monuments were erected between 1890 and 1940—long after the end of the war and at the height of the Jim Crow era—when Southern states legalized racial segregation under a system of racial apartheid. Groups like the United Daughters of the Confederacy, which admitted the white daughters of Confederate soldiers and politicians, worked to instill a “lost cause” narrative of the war by placing Confederate flags in classrooms, monitoring textbooks, and ultimately, creating monuments.