Over the weekend, Vice President Kamala Harris kicked off a bill signing ceremony at the White House! During this ceremony, President Joe Biden officially made Juneteenth a federal holiday!
Harris said, “We are gathered here in a house built by enslaved people.” She added, “We are footsteps away from where President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. And we are here to witness President Joe Biden establish Juneteenth as a national holiday.”
The ceremony took place in the East Room where nearly every member of the Congressional Black Caucus and bipartisan lawmakers from the House and Senate were in attendance. In addition, 94-year-old, Opal Lee – a Texas community leader who has made it her mission to make Juneteenth a holiday attended the ceremony. Music icon, Usher was also there for the important mark in history.
On June 19th, 1865, Major General Gordon Granger of the Union Army made the announcement in Galveston, Texas, two years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation.
POTUS, Joe Biden said, “I have to say to you, I’ve only been president for several months, but I think this will go down, for me, as one of the greatest honors I will have as president.”
The Juneteenth National Independence Day Act has been designated Juneteenth National Independence Day as a legal public holiday.