Voting for war


One day after the attack on Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressed a Joint Session of Congress, pronounced December 7 “a day of infamy,” and asked Congress for a formal declaration of war against Japan. Congress, in almost perfect unanimity, promptly complied. At 4:10 p.m., 28 hours after the first wave of Japanese planes appeared as a giant blip on the screen at the radar station in Hawaii, President Roosevelt signed the formal declaration of war against Japan, and the United States entered World War II. This tally sheet records the votes in the House of Representatives on the resolution for a declaration of war against Japan; it was adopted 388–1. Jeannette Rankin, representative from Montana and dedicated pacifist (she had voted against the resolution for entering World War I in 1917), was the only member of Congress to vote “no.”

National Archives, Records of the U.S. House of Representatives Used with the permission of the U.S. House of Representatives


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