On Tuesday night, as Democrats held the Senate floor in opposition of Sen. Jeff Sessions confirmation as U.S. Attorney General, Sen. Elizabeth Warren read a letter that Coretta Scott King wrote in opposition of Sessions in 1986.
Just a day before Sessions is expected to be confirmed as attorney general, Warren invoked the words of King, widow of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., in a fiery anti-Sessions speech. King originally wrote the letter to urge Congress to block the 1986 nomination of Jeff Sessions for federal judge. President Ronald Reagan had nominated him for the position.
In the letter, which was previously unavailable publicly, King states that allowing Sessions to join the federal bench would “irreparably damage the work of [her] husband.” Her letter ultimately played a crucial role in the argument against Session’s confirmation.
On the Senate floor Tuesday, Sen. Warren read many passages from King’s letter, which explicitly accused Mr. Sessions of working against the efforts that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 sought to accomplish.
Warren also cited Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), who said that Jeff Sessions in a federal judgeship would be a “disgrace.”
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) February 8, 2017
Warren was interrupted and reprimanded during her speech, which can be seen in the video below, and was ultimately permitted to continue reading Mrs. King’s letter.
Watch Sen. Warren’s full speech here:
You can read Coretta Scott King’s letter in it’s entirety here.