Dem Leaders in 1965: "Filibuster Threat Is Too Daunting -- So Let's Just Drop This Civil Rights Crap"

03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

• This blog entry was originally written in 1965.

• The great Google outage of March 1965 contributed to a slight (44 year) delay in it being published on Huffington Post


Caution! You are about to enter another dimension.

Next stop: The 1965 Zone!

Dateline: March 16th 1965

We have a Democratic President. We have large Democratic majorities in both the House and the Senate. It's long been part of the progressive and liberal platform.

Of course the Republican senator from Arizona who was defeated in the Presidential election last year is against it.

So are most of the GOP, some "centrist" Dems and a bunch of ignorant rednecks who say that this legislation will turn our nation into a socialist state.

Given all this opposition, it's obvious that the President and the Democrats should just fold their tent and accept a watered-down compromise. need to pass this stupid piece of legislation called THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT of 1965.

If the Negroes want "change" then I guess they'll just have to wait till there's a Democratic President, Democratic Senators and House Members with some backbone.

Maybe we'll have that in 40 or 50 years time... Yeah by 2009! We can try for some real reform then - in the FUTURE...


Lest the point of this satirically-framed post elude any readers -- let me be totally explicit.

• In 1964 and 1965 America had a Democratic President and Democratic majorities in the House and Senate. Just like America has in 2009.

• The Republican candidate for President in the 1964 election was the GOP Senator from the state of Arizona -- Senator Barry Goldwater. He opposed the Civil Rights Act. Just like health-care reform is opposed by the Republican candidate for President in the 2008 election -- the GOP Senator from the state of Arizona -- Senator John McCain.

• In 1964, reform opponents (Republicans and so-called "moderate" Democrats) in the Senate threatened -- and carried out -- a filibuster against the 1964 Civil Rights Act that lasted FIFTY SEVEN DAYS. Just like health-care reform opponents are threatening to do now.

• Despite these Neanderthal-brained opponents of reform, President Johnson and the majority of Democratic members of the Senate and House stood firm. They didn't bend to the pressure from conservatives and self-styled "moderate" Democrats -- ie knuckle-draggers. Just like.... Oooops! No - I guess I can't say that...

• The Civil Rights Act was finally signed into law on July 2nd 1964. The Voting Rights Act was finally signed into law on August 6th 1965.

• Neither of those vital Acts would have become law had LBJ and the Senate and House Democratic leaders been spineless and sought endless compromises with those implacably opposed to the long-overdue reforms. The Democrats of 1964 and 1965 heeded the call of History and acted with tenacity and courage. Just like... Oooops! No - I guess I can't say that...

• If the moral of this post eludes the present-day White House and the Democratic leadership in the Senate and the House -- then I won't be the slightest bit surprised...