GOP Sen. Cornyn introduces bill to make Juneteenth a nat’l holiday

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, arrives for a Senate Judiciary Committee business meeting to consider authorization for subpoenas relating to the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, and other matters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, June 11, 2020. (Erin Schaff/The New York Times via AP, Pool)

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UPDATED 6:15 PM PT — Thursday, June 18, 2020

A Republican senator has stated he is planning to introduce legislation to make Juneteenth a federal holiday. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) made the announcement while speaking on the Senate floor Thursday.

June 19th marks the end of slavery in the state of Texas. Sen. Cornyn explained why honoring that specific day is important.

“It’s an opportunity to reflect on our history, the mistakes we have made, but yet how far we’ve come in the fight for equality and a reminder of just how far we still have to go,” he said.

Though it’s an unofficial holiday, 47 states, including Washington, D.C., have recognized Juneteenth for over 150 years.

Rep. Sheila Jackson (D-Texas) recently introduced similar legislation in the House.

Meanwhile, President Trump has said he made the day famous after “nobody had ever heard of it.” In a recent interview, the president claimed the original date for his upcoming rally in Tulsa helped bring awareness to the day.

The president moved his rally date from June 19th to the 20th after being criticized that the original date was racially insensitive.

MORE NEWS: Google, NFL Latest To Call For Juneteenth Commemorations

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Shanon Peckham
Author: Shanon Peckham

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