Awards to Recognize Support For the Republic, ‘If You Can Keep It’
Alexandria, Virginia (April 5, 2017) – 60 Plus Association Chairman and Founder James Martin today issued the following statement regarding his group’s prestigious Ben Franklin Award and its presentation to Senators supporting the confirmation of Judge Neil Gorsuch as associate justice on the U.S. Supreme Court:
“Ben Franklin was the oldest, and possibly the wisest, person at the Constitutional Convention in 1787. Our group and the millions of supporters of the 60-Plus Association have always honored Franklin’s famous observation that, ‘Two certainties in life are taxes and death,’ and have added a third certainty which we have dedicated ourselves to abolishing – taxes after death.
As he left Independence Hall on that final day of those secret deliberations 230 years ago, a lady asked Doctor Franklin whether we had a monarchy or a republic. ‘A republic,’ he replied, ‘if you can keep it.’
It is in this sprit that the 60-Plus Association has, over the years, awarded the prestigious Ben Franklin Award to Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle to recognize their dedication to preserving the American republic and fighting for its seniors.
This year, our Ben Franklin Award will go to each individual Senator who votes to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
This is a critical time in our nation’s history and Judge Gorsuch’s role on the high court will directly impact the daily lives of seniors, our children and our grandchildren for years to come.
For this reason, we are changing our practice for the Ben Franklin Award. We want to highlight that senior citizens have a lot at stake with Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation. A majority of seniors voted for President Trump and the 2016 election was the first in our history where the choosing the next Supreme Court justice was a major factor in a presidential campaign.
Last Friday, President Trump repeated Ben Franklin’s challenge in his radio address to the nation, saying that Judge Gorsuch’s nomination and confirmation are about, ‘preserving our Republic,’ and the Senate has the opportunity to help preserve our institutions for generations of Americans. A vote to confirm Judge Gorsuch means, ‘America will be a more free, fair, and just nation for all of our citizens.’
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has repeated this challenge to preserve our republic, avoid a historic filibuster of a Supreme Court nominee, and maintain the integrity of the founders’ framework of three distinct branches of government that mutually respect each other.
We have established, and will award, a special ‘If You Can Keep It’ Ben Franklin Award, to any and all Senators who accept the challenge and vote to confirm Judge Gorsuch.”