While Americans were voting for who they hoped would be their next president, a group of Republicans in Congress were voting against naming a post office after literary luminary and civil rights activist Maya Angelou, accusing her of being a "Communist sympathizer" or "too controversial."
Maryland Representative Andy Harris voted against the Maya Angelou Memorial Post Office "because she was a communist sympathizer," a spokeswoman told NBC News. "His parents escaped communism and he feels that he cannot vote to name a post office in the US in honour of someone who supported the communist Castro revolution in Cuba."
Another congressman, Mississippi Rep. Steven Palazzo, "just felt it was too controversial," his spokeswoman told the Clarion-Ledger. Palazzo also said he heard his fellow foes condemn her support for the Cuban Revolution.
Angelou, who died in 2014, often spoke out against segregation and apartheid.
The writer, perhaps best known for her debut book I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, was awarded America's Medal of Freedom in 2011. She was commemorated with a stamp last year.
"Naming post offices is one of the most benign and bipartisan duties we perform in the House of Representatives, and there is rarely any opposition," said Democratic Congressman Steve Israel of New York. "That's why I was shocked today as nine Republicans voted against naming a post office after Maya Angelou, indisputably one of our country's greatest poets, authors and civil rights activists."
Regardless of the opposition, it's likely the naming of the post office in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, will go through; 371 congressmen voted to approve it.