1953 : Congressman Louis C. Rabaut (D-Mich) Introduces Bill To Insert “Under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance

April 20, 2018 all-day

Louis Charles Rabaut (December 5, 1886 – November 12, 1961) was politician from the U.S. state of Michigan. He was a Democratic congressman representing Michigan’s 14th congressional district from 1935 to 1947, and from 1949 to 1961. He is best known for introducing legislation that added the words “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance.

On April 20, 1953, prompted by a letter from Brooklyn resident H. Joseph Mahoney, Rabaut submitted a resolution to amend the Pledge of Allegiance with the words “under God”. The practice had been adopted several years earlier by the Knights of Columbus. Rabaut’s bill was the first of many similar efforts, culminating in Representative Charles Oakman and Senator Homer Ferguson’s joint resolution in 1954. Speaking in support of the bill, Rabaut said:

You may argue from dawn to dusk about differing political, economic, and social systems, but the fundamental issue which is the unbridgeable gap between America and Communist Russia is a belief in Almighty God. From the root of atheism stems the evil weed of communism and its branches of materialism and political dictatorship. Unless we are willing to affirm our belief in the existence of God and His creator-creature relation to man, we drop man himself to the significance of a grain of sand and open the floodgates to tyranny and oppression.

The bill passed and was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on June 14, Flag Day.

Louis Rabaut wikipedia entry

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