. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – Meet The Press – Adam Clayton Powell – February 12, 1961 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection.
Probably one of the most outspoken and fearless members on Capitol Hill during his 26 years in office was Congressman from New York, Adam Clayton Powell. He was a staunch supporter of Civil Rights as well as a vigorous supporter of important social legislation passed during the Presidencies of John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson.
As the first African-American from New York to be elected to Congress, Powell became a powerful national figure for the Democratic Party. And in 1961 was elected b Congress to become Chairman of the powerful Education and Labor Committee.
Powell was a vigorous supporter of the Democratic Party, but he was also his own man. In 1956 he supported the re-election of President Eisenhower and had often come to blows with members of the Southern Democratic party over the question of race and civil rights.
On this episode of Meet The Press, Powell is interviewed by Ted Poston of the New York Post, Merrill Muller of NBC News, May Craig of the Portland Press-Herald and Lawrence E. Spivak. The subject, naturally, is the Chairmanship and what Powell’s plans are for this committee in the coming year, as well as discussing his colorful and often controversial career, including questions regarding recent income Tax inquiries.
A lively and informative interview and a glimpse of one of the important, though not all that well remembered today, figures in African-American life, politics and civil rights.