Thanks to Republicans beginning to appreciate the heritage of our Grand Old Party, it has become better known that Republicans in Congress supported the 1964 Civil Rights Act much more than did the Democrats. Indeed, the legislator most responsible for breaking the Democrat filibuster was a Republican senator, Everett Dirksen.
And now, the question that should be before us: How did that landmark legislation come to be? The answer to that is a source of pride for all Republicans today.
The origin of the 1964 Civil Rights Act can be traced back to the Reconstruction era. That was when the Republican Party enacted the first civil rights act ever, the 1866 Civil Rights Act. Never heard of it? Democrat history professors would rather you didn't. With that law, Republicans took a big step toward making Abraham Lincoln's vision for “a new birth of freedom” a reality.
Ominously, the assassination of the Great Emancipator had left the presidency to his Democrat vice president, Andrew Johnson. Senator Lyman Trumbull (R-IL), co-author of the 13th Amendment banning slavery, also wrote the 1866 Civil Rights Act. Republican support was nearly unanimous, while Democrats were unanimously opposed. This would be the first time Congress overrode a presidential veto of a significant bill.
The law conferred U.S. citizenship on all African-Americans, according them “full and equal benefit of all laws and proceedings for the security of person and property as is enjoyed by white citizens.” Despite Democrat objections, Republicans made sure African-Americans had the right to own property, engage in business, sign contracts and file lawsuits. [...]
Read the whole thing at Human Events.