Oregon senator finishes reading Coretta Scott King letter on Jeff Sessions that got Elizabeth Warren rebuked

Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon), in defiance of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), read aloud from Coretta Scott King’s letter about Jeff Sessions.

On Tuesday night, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) was rebuked on the senate floor by Sen. McConnell, who brought up an arcane procedural rule to effectively silence Sen. Warren as she quoted a letter about Jeff Sessions from Coretta Scott King (Martin Luther King’s widow). When it was his turn to speak, Sen. Merkley picked up where Warren left off, making sure his colleagues got to hear the remainder of the letter.

McConnell’s move was widely derided as petty by political observers on Twitter on the hashtag #LetLizSpeak, with both that hashtag and the hashtag #CorettaScottKing becoming top national trends in a matter of hours. Warren proceeded to read the rest of her letter outside the Senate floor, and a Facebook Live video of her reading the letter had accumulated over 2 million views as of this writing.

During the debate on whether to make Jeff Sessions the next Attorney General, I tried to read a letter from Coretta…

Posted by U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday, February 7, 2017


In the letter, which was originally authored in 1986 to protest President Ronald Reagan’s nomination of Jeff Sessions to a federal judgeship, King opines that Sessions would likely use his position as a federal judge to deny African Americans the right to vote, given his harsh prosecutions of three voting rights activists in Alabama when Sessions was a U.S. Attorney.

“Anyone who has used the power of his office as United States Attorney to intimidate and chill the free exercise of the ballot by citizens should not be elevated to our courts,” King wrote.

Read Coretta Scott King’s full letter below, courtesy of Vox’s German Lopez:

Coretta Scott King 1986 Letter on Jeff Sessions by German Lopez on Scribd


Tom Cahill is a writer for the Resistance Report based in the Pacific Northwest. He specializes in coverage of political, economic, and environmental news. You can contact him via email at [email protected], or follow him on Facebook.