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Contact: Giselle Barry (Markey) 202-224-2742
Lacey Rose (Warren) 202-224-2292
J.P. Freire (Hatch) 202-228-0210
Rachael Dean (McCain) 202-224-7130
Senators Markey, Warren, Hatch and McCain Applaud Passage of Legislation to Commemorate JFK Centennial
John F. Kennedy Centennial Commission Act would help to carry out activities to honor President Kennedy on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth
Washington (July 15, 2016) – Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Orin Hatch (R-Utah) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) applauded passage of Senate legislation to establish a commission to be known as the “John F. Kennedy Centennial Commission” that would plan, develop, and carry out activities to honor President Kennedy on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth in 2017. The Commission will be comprised of 11 members, including the Secretary of the Interior and ten other individuals appointed by the President and leaders of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Similar legislation was enacted in 2009 to create a commission to honor the centennial of President Ronald Regan’s birth, which included international ceremonies, award presentations, entertainment and educational events and other centennial programs throughout the country. John F. Kennedy was born in Brookline, Massachusetts on May 29, 1917, and served as President of the United States from 1961-1963, in the U.S. Senate from 1953-1960 and in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1947-1953.
Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-Mass.) introduced the companion legislation in the House. The entire Massachusetts Congressional delegation co-sponsored the bill.
“From the Civil Rights movement, to the space race, to the signing of the Equal Pay Act, President Kennedy's legacy continues to resonate in importance and urgency in the 21st century,” said Senator Markey. “His challenge to land a man on the Moon led to the discovery of new technologies and spurred historic funding in science and research, the lifeblood of the Massachusetts economy. President Kennedy will always represent a bold vision for our nation's future, an idealism without illusion, a commitment to public service, and a youthful vigor and irrepressible energy that signals to the rest of the world that Americans believe that even better days for our country are always ahead of us. I am proud to join with my colleagues Senators Warren, Hatch and McCain in helping to pass this legislation and look forward to working with the Commission to honor the centennial of President John F. Kennedy’s birth.”
“President John F. Kennedy made an enduring impact on our country and on our Commonwealth, offering a bold vision for the future and inspiring generations of Americans to become engaged citizens,” said Senator Warren. “As we mark the centennial of his birth, this commission will help us honor President Kennedy’s remarkable legacy of leadership and service.”
“Over the years, I have been honored to know and work with members of the Kennedy family who have built a tremendous legacy of public service,” said Senator Hatch. “Americans of all political persuasions remember President Kennedy as an inspiring leader and an icon of the twentieth century. The centennial of his birth offers an opportunity to inspire a new generation of Americans and renew our shared commitment to serving the nation.”
“There are few leaders throughout history whose legacy of service and iconic leadership have inspired the country the way President John F. Kennedy has,” said Senator McCain. “I’m proud Congress has passed our legislation to create this commission, which will not only help Americans celebrate JFK’s remarkable life, but ensure his legacy lives on for generations to come.”
A copy of the legislation can be found HERE.
“President Kennedy passionately believed that the collective capacity of the American people was limitless,” said Rep. Kennedy. “If we stood united towards a common cause, he knew the moon was within reach, equality was possible and lasting peace could endure. On his 100th birthday, we will commemorate not just the father, brother and president that he was, but the ideals and values that he left with this nation.”
“On behalf of the Board of Directors of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, I extend our sincere appreciation to Senators Markey, Warren, Hatch, and McCain, and Representatives Kennedy and McCarthy for their efforts to establish a commission to honor President Kennedy on the 100th anniversary of his birth,” said Kenneth R. Feinberg, Chairman, John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. “The first U.S. president born in the 20th century, John F. Kennedy’s legacy of progress, service, innovation, and inspiration continues to reverberate in this new millennium. We look forward to working with the commission to help educate Americans about this important chapter in our nation’s history, the timeless values President Kennedy championed, and their continued relevance today.”