Connecticut Congressman Fumes At Lincoln's Innaccuracies: But Does It Matter?
The trouble when you’re in Hollywood and want to make a big screen biopic is that you’ve got an awful lot of facts getting in the way of a good story. The hope is that you get rid of a few of those and hope that no one will notice, unfortunately there’s a lot of nerds about these days, and some of them have very high governmental positions. So when Steven Spielberg made the Oscar-nominated Lincoln he must have been fully aware that any twisting of the truth would be found out.
They have, by Connecticut Rep. Joe Courtney, who had this to say about his experience of the film: "As a Member of Congress from Connecticut, I was on the edge of my seat during the roll call vote on the ratification of the 13th Amendment outlawing slavery. But when two of three members of the Nutmeg State’s House delegation voted to uphold slavery, I could not believe my own eyes and ears.” For any of you not sure on the history of the vote, Courtney goes on to explain. “How could Congressmen from Connecticut—a state that supported President Lincoln and lost thousands of her sons fighting against slavery on the Union side of the Civil War—have been on the wrong side of history?" he fumed, going on to point out that records show all four members of the Connecticut delegation voted to abolish slavery.
Courtney did enjoy Lincoln, he admitted, but understood Spielberg’s artistic conundrum, agreeing that “some facts may be blurred to make a story more compelling on the big screen.” However, when that fact was “placing the State of Connecticut on the wrong side of the historic and divisive fight over slavery” he wasn’t impressed. “[It’s] an inaccuracy that should be acknowledged, and if possible, corrected before Lincoln is released on DVD,” he wrote.