Mar. 6, 2015

Not Advisable: GOP Leaders to Skip Selma Commemoration

Republicans leaders will not be attending the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights march in Selma, Alabama. The event this weekend will bring 100 lawmakers – including some Republicans and both Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama – to commemorate the violent crackdown and eventual march led by Martin Luther King Jr. that eventually led to the Voting Rights Act. But the likes of John Boehner and Kevin McCarthy will be noticeably absent. Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus G.K Butterfield (D-NC) said of the absent Republicans, “It is very disappointing that not a single Republican leader sees the value in participating in this 50th commemoration of the signing of the Voting Rights Act. I had hoped that some of the leadership would attend, but apparently none of them will. The Republicans always talk about trying to change their brand and be more appealing to minority folks and be in touch with the interests of African-Americans. This is very disappointing.” Admittedly, the story of Selma has become politicized recently (you just need to listen to the lyrics of “Glory,” the song in “Selma,” which won an Oscar this year). But Republicans have more to loose in not going to the commemoration than staying home. More…

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