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Majority Whip Clyburn on LBJ

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March 06, 2007
Tue, 03/06/2007 - 12:00am -- 1brightstar

Lawmaker Supports Legislation Naming the Department of Education Headquarters Building After President Lyndon Baines Johnson

WASHINGTON, DC - House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn today spoke in favor of HR 584, legislation introduced by Rep. Gene Green (D-TX), naming the Department of Education Headquarters in Washington DC after President Lyndon Johnson. The legislation was approved unanimously.

"Madame Speaker, as a former history teacher, who started his educational pursuits as a four-year-old in his mother's kindergarten, I proudly rise in support of HR 584, legislation to designate the headquarters building of the Department of Education, here in Washington DC, as the Lyndon Baines Johnson Federal Building.

"Most remember President Johnson for his poise and confidence as he assumed the presidency during a turbulent and mournful time for our nation. He is also remembered for his leadership and vision with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. It was his support in the White House for a movement that I and my brothers and sisters were fighting for on the busses and at the lunch counters throughout the south that helped bring me here today.

"But I give special thanks to his work in an area that is dear to my heart-education. President Johnson recognized the power of education to strengthen a nation and help bring people out of poverty. He made his name as the first education president by signing into law over 60 education bills during his presidency. Most notably-the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, the Elementary and Secondary Education act of 1965 and the Higher Education Act of 1965.

"He was the first president to recognize the need for strong federal investment in education, backing programs that funded not only elementary and secondary education, but higher education with the federal student loan program for college and graduate school students.

"He gave us Head Start, which since its inception has helped millions of disadvantaged children get off on the right foot by providing health, nutritional and educational assistance-recognizing that an investment in our children at an early age pays off in the long run.

"His domestic vision for this country was revolutionary in the areas of civil rights and fighting of poverty. We still see the benefits of his vision for a Great Society today. That is why I am proud to join my colleagues in passing legislation to designate the Department of Education as the first federal building in Washington, DC that would bear his name.

"I thank the gentle lady yielding me his time and thank the gentleman for his leadership on this legislation and I yield back the balance of my time."

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