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April 08, 2019

TUESDAY, APRIL 9: Senator Doug Jones to Lead Bipartisan Commemorative Reading of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 1963 Letter from Birmingham Jail

Bipartisan group of senators will participate in a reading of the letter in the U.S. Senate chamber

SAVE THE DATE – On Tuesday, April 9th at 3:45 p.m. EDT / 2:45 p.m. CDT, U.S. Senator Doug Jones will lead a bipartisan reading of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Letter from Birmingham Jail on the floor of the United States Senate chamber.

In April 1963, Dr. King penned the letter from his cell at the Birmingham Jail, where he and other protestors were detained for leading a series of nonviolent protests and boycotts in Birmingham to put pressure on the business community to end discriminatory hiring practices. He wrote passionately in response to an open letter led by eight white clergymen from Alabama urging him to abandon his efforts in Birmingham, calling his protests “unwise and untimely” and criticizing him for being an outsider coming in to agitate in Birmingham. Dr. King rejected the notion that African-Americans should remain patient in the struggle to shed the bonds of oppression and daily indignities inflicted by Jim Crow laws in the South. In his letter he famously responded to their criticisms writing, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

To honor Dr. King’s legacy and commemorate the anniversary of his Letter from Birmingham Jail, Senator Doug Jones will be joined by Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) for the reading of the letter on the Senate floor.


WHAT:         Senator Jones to lead a bipartisan Senate floor reading of the Letter from Birmingham Jail

WHO:           Senators Doug Jones (D-Ala.), Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska).

WHEN:         Tuesday, April 9 at 3:45 p.m. EDT / 2:45 p.m. CDT

WHERE:       The U.S. Senate Chamber livestream is available here. Video will also be streamed to Senator Jones’ official social media accounts on Twitter (@SenDougJones) and Facebook.

NOTE:           Exact timing is subject to change pending legislative activity on the floor.


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