U.S. History

"The Bill of the Century: The Epic Battle for the Civil Rights Act"

Clay Risen

About the Program

Clay Risen, staff editor of The New York Times op-ed section, recounts the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  The author recalls the arduous work involved in passing the legislation, which was marked by one of the longest filibusters in American history by opponents who sought to defeat the measure.  Ultimately, Mr. Risen reports, it was the work of a multitude of supporters, including civil rights activists, politicians, lobbyists, and lawyers to push through the legislation that was signed by President Lyndon Johnson on July 2, 1964.  Clay Risen speaks with historian Nell Irvin Painter at Greenlight Bookstore in Brooklyn, New York.

About the Authors

Clay Risen

Clay Risen is the author of A Nation on Fire: America in the Wake of the King Assassination.  He is a staff editor of The New York Times op-ed section.  For more information, visit the author's website, clayrisen.com or on twitter @risenc.


Buy the author's book from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound

Program Information

"The Bill of the Century: The Epic Battle for the Civil Rights Act"

Watch This Program
Watch This Program

Purchase This Program

Future Airings

  • Tuesday, September 2nd at 3am (ET)

Past Airings

  • Monday, September 1st at 2pm (ET)
  • Sunday, May 25th at 2pm (ET)
  • Monday, May 5th at 6:45am (ET)
  • Saturday, May 3rd at 8:45pm (ET)
Washington Journal on C-SPAN