June 19, 1964: The Senate Passes Civil Rights Act
On this day in 1964, the Senate passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The act was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson on July 2. The landmark act barred discrimination based on race, color, religion, or national origin in public facilities — such as restaurants, theaters, or hotels. Discrimination in hiring practices was also outlawed. The Civil Rights Act paved the way for future anti-discrimination legislation, including the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
To learn more about milestones in the Civil Rights Movement, visit Eyes on the Prize online.
Photo: President Lyndon Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law. Martin Luther King, Jr. is among those looking on. (National Archives and Records Administration)
- 94-0 Senate vote confirming Petraeus as CIA director source
» The big shuffle continues: With Robert Gates’ retirement, and Leon Panetta imminently poised to become the new Secretary of Defense, the Senate has voted to confirm General David Petaeus to take Panetta’s old job. Petraeus had been serving as the Commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, but will be departing to become the number one man of the government agency we all think of when we think about high-level secrecy. Of note in this confirmation — ninety-four to nothing! Even in a thoroughly divided Washington, it’s clear Petraeus is still one of the most politically popular people to stand in support of, no matter the political party.
June 2, 1986 - This is the first U.S. Senate session aired by C-SPAN
“Today begins the video history book.” - Sen. Bob Dole (R-KS) on TV in the Senate - @cspan
(Video: click the pic)
“On the campaign trail, Al Franken was wonkish — understandably so. During the long recount and legal challenge of his 2008 Senate race, which resulted in Franken’s win by 312 votes, people who worked with the comedian said he was intensely disciplined and focused, with nary a snarky remark, even in private.
The satirist died when the senator took office.
…Thus, it was heartening to see him make at least a feeble attempt at mocking this enfeebled institution the other day, grimacing during remarks by the dour Senator Mitch McConnell.
“This isn’t Saturday Night Live, Al,” McConnell scolded Franken. Franken promptly apologized. Months earlier, John McCain was upset at another Franken breach, when he refused to grant a fellow senator more bloviating time beyond his allotment.
“It harms the comity of the Senate,” McCain complained.
If ever there was a place in need of more comedy, and less comity, it’s the U.S. Senate.
Cobwebbed by senseless rituals, speeches which no one listens to and rules that make it all but impossible to act on the will of the people, the Senate cries for more ridicule, decorum breaches and old-fashioned wit.”
The Mirthless Senate - NYTimes
Arlen Specter, the longest serving U.S. Senator in Pennsylvania history, lost his primary race Tuesday to Rep. Joe Sestak