Friday, 15 March 2013

The Voting Rights Act 1965

President Lyndon Johnson (36th US President often referred to as LBJ)

I would love to post this video, President Johnson's speech about the Voting Rights Act, however blogger is refusing to co-operate, so you will need to follow the above link!

15th March 1965 was a very important day in American and world history with President  Lyndon Johnson calling for equal voting rights, a huge contribution to civil liberty. The act was passed by the senate 25th May 1965 and came into being very quickly, 6th August 1965, just 5 months after it was first announced. The Act's full title is: ‘An act to enforce the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution of the United States, and for other purposes,’ an interesting and somewhat ‘open’ title. The act itself was designed to allow all American Citizens the right to vote, effectively giving the vote to every ‘race and colour’ in an effort to over-ride discriminatory practice.

This is an important part of the legislative history which followed the Civil War. The Voting Rights Act has subsequently been renewed and extended 4 more times to date, the most recent being 2006, signed  by President George W Bush.

Lyndon Johnson was often referred to as the 'accidental president,' succeeding to the presidency after the assassination of President John F Kennedy, remaining in power for just over 5 years. President Johnson's main aim was to create a 'war against poverty' to better the USA.

Jaz McKenzie

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