By Lucia Suarez Sang
Published July 16, 2019
A Minnesota city council on Monday reportedly agreed to reinstate the Pledge of Allegiance at meetings, weeks after the group sparked a widespread -- and high-reaching -- backlash by removing the pledge's recital.
Officials for St. Louis Park unanimously voted to reinstate the pledge.
“I’ve concluded that I made a mistake and I’m sorry and I’m asking for forgiveness,” city council member Steve Hallifan said at the meeting, according to FOX9.
The city council, which is in controversial Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar’s 5th congressional district, created an uproar after a June 17 unanimous vote which amended the procedural rules to cut the pledge from the start of each session. The change came as part of an effort to serve a more “diverse community," council member Tim Brausen said during the June meeting.
“We concluded that in order to create a more welcoming environment to a diverse community we’re going to forgo saying the Pledge of Allegiance before every meeting,” Brausen said.
The change soon sparked protests and criticism from people opposing the decision – and the news eventually worked its way up to President Trump.
“The Pledge of Allegiance to our great Country, in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, is under siege. That is why I am going to win the Great State of Minnesota in the 2020 Election,” Trump tweeted last week. “People are sick and tired of this stupidity and disloyalty to our wonderful USA!”
Trump has not commented since the pledge was reinstated.
At Monday’s meeting, the city council members spoke about the toll the decision -- and the reaction to it -- had taken on their mental health and productivity. Additionally, council members reported receiving threatening phone calls and emails, FOX9 reported.
Anne Mavity, the councilwoman who proposed the original measure, remained defiant -- even as she reversed her vote -- and addressed the council's critics.
“I’m not sure that if you say the pledge three times a month instead of this two, you’re more patriotic," Mavity said. "Or if you say it one time a month you’re less patriotic. That makes no sense."