Alveda King -- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s niece -- accused Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) of seeking to “stir up emotions” and “play the race card” by invoking the King family name during a Senate floor speech on the evening of February 7 in her floor remarks. Warren read from a letter written by Coretta Scott King while expressing her opposition to President Trump’s attorney general nominee, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL).
“It’s almost like a bait and switch,” said Alveda King. “Stir up their emotions, use the name of King — and my name is Alveda King — stir up people’s emotions, play the race card, which she was attempting to do.” King, a Fox News contributor, spoke today to Fox Business Network.
During an hours-long talkathon by Senate Democrats on the evening of February 7, Republicans voted on party lines to silence Warren for impugning fellow a fellow senator, Sessions. They ruled that Warren had violated Senate parliamentary rules during her lengthy speech condemning Sessions. Warren read out loud a letter Coretta Scott King sent to the Senate in 1986, when the body was deciding whether or not to confirm Sessions to a lifetime appointment on the federal bench.
Before Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) rebuked her, Warren was warned. Other Democrats read from the Coretta Scott King letter without being silenced. On Facebook, the progressive Warren finished her reading of the the letter in which the widow of the renowned civil rights leader said that “Mr. Sessions has used the awesome power of his office to chill the free exercise of the vote by black citizens in the district he now seeks to serve as a federal judge.”
Today, Warren displayed the letter as something that all Americans, especially Republicans, should read. “I don’t think voters are asking us to ignore facts. I don’t think voters are asking us to say, you know, we’re just gonna ignore what this man did to black citizens because it’s not only the black citizens,” Warren told CNN. “The speech also talked about what he’s done with immigrants, with women. The real question for an attorney general of the United States is whether or not he can be trusted in the hours when you can’t review what he does? Can he be trusted to do two things: to stand up strongly on behalf of everyone — not just those he agrees with, but everyone — and, secondly, does he have the intestinal fortitude to stand up to the president of the United States when the president issues an illegal and unconstitutional order? Those are the jobs of the attorney general of the United States.”
Alveda King described her aunt and her whole family as “a peace maker.” She also said that if Coretta Scott King were alive today, she would endorse Sessions’ for his record of prosecuting the Ku Klux Klan and desegregation of public schools. In the week before Trump was inaugurated, Martin Luther King III met with Trump in Manhattan. When asked about their conversation, King said, “Certainly he said that he is going to represent Americans. He’s said that over and over again. We will continue to evaluate that.” Speaking to reporters at Trump Tower, King -- the oldest living child of the civil rights icon -- said, “I believe that’s his intent,” and added, “I believe we have to consistently engage with pressure, public pressure. It doesn’t happen automatically. My father and his team understood that, did that.”