NATIONAL NEWS

Biden and Harris will meet with the King family on the 60th anniversary of the March on Washington

Aug 25, 2023, 3:13 AM

This photo provided by the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture show...

This photo provided by the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture shows crowds participating in the March on Washington on Aug. 28, 1963. (Aaron Stanley Tretick/Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture via AP)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(Aaron Stanley Tretick/Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris will observe Monday’s 60th anniversary of the March on Washington by meeting with organizers of the 1963 gathering and relatives of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial.

The Oval Office meeting will be held six decades after President John F. Kennedy and King met at the White House on the morning of the march on Aug. 28, 1963.

Biden also will speak later Monday at a White House reception commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, a nonpartisan, nonprofit legal organization that was established at Kennedy’s request to help advocate for racial justice.

Two White House officials provided details of the Democratic president and vice president’s plans on the condition of anonymity because their schedules have not been officially announced.

The 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom is still considered one of the greatest and most consequential racial justice demonstrations in U.S. history.

The nonviolent protest attracted as many as 250,000 people to the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and provided the momentum for passage by Congress of landmark civil rights and voting rights legislation in the years that followed. King was assassinated in April 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee.

Black civil right leaders and a multiracial, interfaith coalition of allies will gather in Washington to mark six decades since the first march. Biden will be flying back to Washington on Saturday after a week of vacation with his family in California’s Lake Tahoe region.

This year’s commemoration comes at a difficult moment in U.S. history following the erosion of voting rights nationwide and the recent striking down of affirmative action in college admissions and abortion rights by the Supreme Court and amid growing threats of political violence and hatred against people of color, Jews and LGBTQ people.

White House officials say Biden and Harris, who are seeking reelection in 2024, are working hard to advance King’s dream of equal opportunity for every American. Harris is the first Black woman to be vice president.

Biden has signed executive orders to advance racial justice and equity throughout the federal government and to expand access to the right to vote. Voting rights legislation backed by Biden and Harris has stalled in a divided Congress.

Biden recently designated a national monument to honor Emmett Till and his mother, Mamie Till-Mobley. Till is the Black teenager from Chicago who was tortured and killed in 1955 after he was accused of whistling at a white woman in Mississippi. The killing helped galvanize the Civil Rights Movement.

Harris has been outspoken about what she says are attempts by “extremists” to rewrite Black history, including the Florida Board of Education’s recent approval of a revised curriculum to satisfy legislation signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican presidential candidate. The new standards include instruction that enslaved people benefited from skills they learned while in bondage.

The White House says Black Americans are also benefiting from Biden’s economic and other policies, including low unemployment.

Officials note his numerous appointments of Black women to federal courts, including Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, the first Black woman to serve on the nation’s highest court.

They also point to nearly $7 billion in aid to the nation’s network of historically Black colleges and universities and his efforts to forgive billions of dollars in student loan debt.

National News

Members of the U.S. Secret Service look on as Republican presidential candidate former President Do...

Associated Press

The Secret Service acknowledges denying some past requests by Trump’s campaign for tighter security

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) — The Secret Service now acknowledges it denied some requests by Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign for increased security at his events in the years before the assassination attempt on him at a recent rally. In the immediate aftermath of the July 13 attack, the law enforcement agency had denied […]

10 minutes ago

Associated Press

Russia says it scrambled fighter jets to intercept U.S. bomber planes over Barents Sea

Russia said Sunday it scrambled fighter jets to intercept two U.S. military long-range bomber aircraft that approached the Russian border over the Barents Sea in the Arctic. “The crews of the Russian fighters identified the aerial target as a pair of U.S. Air Force B-52H strategic bombers,” Moscow’s defense ministry wrote on the social media […]

44 minutes ago

FILE - Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle attends a news conference, June 4, 2024, in Chicago...

Associated Press

Secret Service chief noted a ‘zero fail mission.’ After Trump rally, she’s facing calls to resign

WASHINGTON (AP) — When safeguard the American president and other dignitaries, she said she would talk to agents in training about the “awesome responsibility” of their job. “This agency and the Secret Service has a zero fail mission,” Cheatle, who is now director of the agency, said in 2021 during a Secret Service podcast called […]

1 hour ago

Janet Jarrett shows a photo of her sister, Pamela Jarrett, she keeps on her phone at the home they ...

Associated Press

Heat-related Texas deaths climb after Beryl left millions without power for days or longer

SPRING, Texas (AP) — As the temperature soared in the Houston-area home Janet Jarrett shared with her sister after losing electricity in Hurricane Beryl, she did everything she could to keep her 64-year-old sibling cool. But on their fourth day without power, she awoke to hear Pamela Jarrett, who used a wheelchair and relied on […]

8 hours ago

Melissa Shepard, left, directing attorney of Immigrant Defenders Law Center, explains the Biden adm...

Associated Press

Behind Biden’s asylum halt: Migrants must say if they fear deportation, not wait to be asked

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Posters inside a complex of giant, white tents tell migrants in English, Spanish, Mandarin and Hindi they should tell an officer if they fear being deported and “your claim will be heard.” On a side wall where migrants are seated in a processing area, a video conveys the same message on […]

8 hours ago

FILE - People walk past the Fiserv Forum ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Thursday...

Associated Press

With GOP convention over, Milwaukee weighs the benefits of hosting political rivals

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Downtown Milwaukee turned red last week as thousands of Republican National Convention delegates and other party stalwarts gathered in Wisconsin’s largest Democratic stronghold to formally rally behind Donald Trump as their candidate for president in the pivotal swing state. Outside the security zone where the convention took place, residents grumbled, ignored or […]

9 hours ago

Biden and Harris will meet with the King family on the 60th anniversary of the March on Washington