Two Georgia women, who in 2020 were alleged to have hidden suitcases filled with ballots under the table where they worked, were among those honored Friday with the Presidential Citizens Medal.
President Joe Biden used the anniversary of the Capitol incursion to honor 14 people for their actions on Jan. 6, 2021 and in the tumult over the 2020 elections.
Fulton County poll workers Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss were later cleared of the allegations.
During the ceremony, Biden praised the honorees for their efforts on “July 6th.”
BREAKING: Joe Biden calls January 6th, “July 6th”
What a joke 😂
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) January 6, 2023
“A violent mob of insurrectionists assaulted law enforcement, vandalized sacred halls, hunted down elected officials — all for the purpose of attempting to overthrow the will of the people and usurp the peaceful transfer of power,” Biden said, according to a White House transcript of his comments.
“All of it — all of it was fueled by lies about the 2020 election. But on this day two years ago, our democracy held because “we the people,” as the Constitution refers to us, we the people did not flinch,” he said.
Biden honored multiple Capitol Police and Metropolitan Police officers, as well as five civilians, including Albert Schmidt, a city commissioner on the Philadelphia County Board of Elections, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and former Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers.
Although video later showed that the allegations against them were false Freeman and Moss were removed as poll workers after the allegations arose. According to the Associated Press, it was not until 2021 that an investigation determined the claim was false.
During testimony to the Jan. 6 committee, the two poll workers noted that the damage was already done, according to WAGA-TV
Freeman offered one illustration of the harassment she endured.
“I wore a shirt that proudly proclaimed that I was, and I am Lady Ruby. Actually, I had that shirt in every color. I wore that shirt on election day 2020. I haven’t worn it since, and I’ll never wear it again,” Freeman said.
Ruby Freeman receives the Presidential Citizens Medal pic.twitter.com/ny8VxwnKxS
— Acyn (@Acyn) January 6, 2023
Tears as Shaye Moss receives her Presidential medal. Courage under fire 🔥🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/VNF3Y0JmFZ
— Thee Girlboxing!🌻🥊🇾🇪😷 (@Girlboxingnow) January 6, 2023
Moss told the panel that justice may never come for her.
“Because of the lies, there are some days I don’t want to get out of bed. There are some days I want to curl up under the covers and disappear. Because of the lies, I’ve lost who I was, and I’ll never be able to do the work I felt I was called to do. My life will never be the same.
“I had to just come to terms with the fact that there will always be people who believe these lies about me. Always. There will always be someone who believes I should be in prison or that I should be dead. There’s no way to fix what happened to me,” she said.
Criteria for the medal include service to a community when far from home; service through an extraordinary act; service to solve a long-term problem; and service that has an impact on the lives of others.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.