Rep. Cleaver: "The 'A-Woman' Came After the Prayer Ended"

By Susan Jones | January 6, 2021 | 6:01am EST
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) toes the line of the new, Democrat-led, gender-neutral House of Representatives. (Photo: Screen capture)
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) toes the line of the new, Democrat-led, gender-neutral House of Representatives. (Photo: Screen capture)

( - Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), an ordained United Methodist pastor, on Tuesday explained why he ended his prayer for the 117th Congress with "Amen" and the bizarre, made-up word, "a-woman."

"In our society now, we look for opportunities to be outraged," Cleaver told Fox News's Neil Cavuto.

I ended the prayer by saying 'amen,' which -- and it is -- it's a Hebrew -- it comes from a Hebrew root word. And there are a lot of definitions of it. But, mainly, it's interpreted to 'be true,' or 'may it be,' things like that.

The a-woman was after the prayer ended, trying to recognize the record number of women now in Congress and a female chaplain. So, I said a-woman, and felt good.

Now, it's important. As I left the chamber, Republicans and Democrats were saying, boy, thank you for that prayer. We really need somebody to ask God for unity, I mean, Republicans and Democrats.

It was not until, the way our society works now, the Twitter world sent out to the people who express outrage. And then they usually get it.

Cavuto noted that many people took offense, believing that Cleaver was trying to make an unnecessary "gender politically correct statement" or to "gender-proof God."

"Ninety-nine-point-99 percent of the people who are expressing outrage didn't even hear the prayer," Cleaver responded. "The prayer wasn't -- wasn't for them. I'm talking to God on behalf of Congress asking for unity and so forth, asking God to give us that strength to do that.

Then I ended the prayer by saying 'amen.'

Cleaver said it's a "problem" that "nations trip and fall over molehills, not mountains. And, as we are arguing and fighting over democracy right now, we're at a point where we're ready to say, well, here's something we can fight about, that somebody did a prayer and said a-woman. And so let's go fight about it.

Cleaver noted that he didn't say "a Democratic woman or a Republican woman.

"We have women, both Republican and Democrat, in record numbers. And then I said 'a-woman.'"

Under new rules adopted by the U.S. House of Representatives for the 117th Congress, lawmakers must "honor all gender identities by changing pronouns and familial relationships in the House rules to be gender neutral."

The new "gender-inclusive" language includes "seafarers" for seamen and "chair" for "chairman."

The rule strikes the words "father, mother, son,  daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law,  daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law,  stepfather, step-mother, step-son, step-daughter, step-brother, step-sister, half-brother, half-sister, grandson, or  grand-daughter" and inserts  "parent,  child,  sibling,  parent’s sibling,  first cousin,  sibling’s  child,  spouse,  parent-in-law, child-in-law, sibling-in-law, step-parent, step-child, step-sibling, half-sibling, or grandchild."

"He" and "she" are discouraged in referring to lawmakers. The preferred terms are now "Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner."

"Themselves should be used instead of "himself' or "herself."


CNSNews Reader,

The media are hard at work weaving a web of confusion, misinformation, and conspiracy surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

CNSNews covers the stories that the liberal media are afraid to touch. It drives the national debate through real, honest journalism—not by misrepresenting or ignoring the facts.

CNSNews has emerged as the conservative media’s lynchpin for original reporting, investigative reporting, and breaking news. We are part of the only organization purely dedicated to this critical mission and we need your help to fuel this fight.

Donate today to help CNSNews continue to report on topics that the liberal media refuse to touch. $25 a month goes a long way in the fight for a free and fair media.

And now, thanks to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, you can make up to a $300 gift to the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization of your choice and use it as a tax deduction on your 2020 taxes, even if you take the standard deduction on your returns.

— The CNSNews Team



Sign up for our CNSNews Daily Newsletter to receive the latest news.