Martin Luther King, Jr., Commenting on the Filibuster

Martin Luther King, Jr., commenting in 1963 on the “minority of misguided senators” who would use the filibuster to block voting rights legislation:

The Washington Post provides a brief analysis of King’s comments, which were given in a television interview on Press Conference U.S.A. During that interview, King was asked about John F. Kennedy’s proposed civil rights act.

In an extended response to a question about the civil rights bill, Martin Luther King, Jr. stated: “I think the tragedy is that we have a Congress with a Senate that has a minority of misguided senators who will use the filibuster to keep the majority of people from even voting. They won’t let the majority senators vote. And certainly they wouldn’t want the majority of people to vote, because they know they do not represent the majority of the American people. In fact, they represent, in their own states, a very small minority.”

As voting rights and the filibuster are once again connected in United States politics, it is a perfect time to revisit Martin Luther King’s perspective on the filibuster’s role in denying voting rights to African Americans and other groups who have been denied civil rights.

The Washington Post reports on Martin Luther King, Jr.’s comments and provides the video here:

This entry was posted in Human Rights, Political Activism and Protest Culture, Political Culture, United States History and Society. Bookmark the permalink.

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