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Today in history: March 15
In 1965, President Johnson introduced the Voting Rights Act
Johnson presents one of the pens used to sign the Voting Rights Act, in August 1965, to James Farmer, director of the Congress of Racial Equality.
Johnson presents one of the pens used to sign the Voting Rights Act, in August 1965, to James Farmer, director of the Congress of Racial Equality. National Archive/Newsmakers/Getty Images

March 15

On this day. 1767: Andrew Jackson was born. He was the 7th President, serving between 1829-37. His tenure became known as the era of "Jacksonian democracy," characterized by a strong presidency and executive branch of government — at the expense of Congress. Jackson — "called Old Hickory" for his toughness — participated in 13 duels and was shot twice. One bullet near his heart was never removed.

On this day. 1915: Woodrow Wilson held the first presidential news conference. He asked reporters to gather and more than 100 did. Prior to Wilson's formal news conference, White House reporters used to just stand outside the gates, interviewing people who came and went. Theodore Roosevelt took pity on them one cold, rainy day and invited them in and set aside a room for them to work. TR's "news conferences" were usually one way lectures and were often given while sitting in the barber's chair.

On this day. 1965: Addressing Congress, President Johnson introduced the Voting Rights Act and called on white Americans to support it. Johnson told Congress that denying the right to vote for any citizen cheapened the ideal of America for all citizens.

Quote of the day

"Every American citizen must have an equal right to vote." –Lyndon B. Johnson


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