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U.S. Senate Unanimously Recognizes America’s Second Founding

June 11, 2015
Washington, DC – In bi-partisan recognition of the fundamental importance of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution adopted in the wake of the Civil War, yesterday the U.S. Senate adopted S. Res. 198 by unanimous consent, commemorating the 150th anniversaries of these transformational Amendments and designating the year 2015 as the “Sesquicentennial of Our Nation’s Second Founding.” These Amendments ended slavery, protected fundamental rights from state abuses, promised equality, and guaranteed the right vote free of racial discrimination.
To help commemorate these watershed events in our history, the Senate “encourages State and local governments to join in the Sesquicentennial celebration by organizing appropriate ceremonies, activities, and educational outreach,” and “encourages the people of the United States to explore the history and significance of the Second Founding.”
Constitutional Accountability Center President and Founder Doug Kendall said, “We are grateful to Senators Patrick Leahy and Mike Lee for their leadership in directing the Nation’s attention to these critical additions to our founding charter. For too long, the story of these transformational Amendments has been overshadowed by what came before, and we look forward to carrying their inspiring message throughout the country over the next five years.”
Text of draft S. Res. 198 (“as passed” text not yet available from the Government Printing Office):
Constitutional Accountability Center ( is a think tank, public interest law firm, and action center dedicated to fulfilling the progressive promise of the Constitution's text and history.