9780156005012 / 0156005018

The Walls of Jericho: Lyndon Johnson, Hubert Humphrey, Richard Russell, and the Struggle for Civil Rights


Publisher:Mariner Books



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About the book:

Written by a former press secretary to two U.S. senators, this is an account of how the U.S. Senate passed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, the nation's first meaningful civil rights law. Author Robert Mann takes us behind the scenes of a 15-year battle that began in 1949 when both Lyndon Johnson and Hubert Humphrey entered the Senate, where Georgian Richard Russell was one its most powerful members. Humphrey's commitment to civil rights was already a matter of record--a year before he had made a stirring speech at the Democratic convention in support of a strong civil rights plank in the party platform. Johnson, however, was more of an ambivalent figure, a man who might privately express support for civil rights, but was publicly against it. Russell, too was against civil rights, but in the hope that one day Johnson might be elected president, used his power covertly to help Johnson pass a 1957 civil rights bill. This is a stirring story of courage, cowardice and, above all, political calculation.

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