Eleanor Holmes Norton talks ‘Freedom Summer’ with Stephen Colbert

Earlier in the day, House Republicans launched a new attack on D.C. home rule. But during Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton’s appearance on The Colbert Report Wednesday night, the subject didn’t come up.

In fact, the whole appearance with light on yuks — contrary to Norton’s previous appearances on Stephen Colbert’s show — and heavy on poignant memories.

That’s because Norton (D) was invited to talk about the 50th anniversary of “Freedom Summer,” when civil rights activists canvassed Mississippi to register African American voters.

Among Norton’s remembrances: In 1963, the year prior to Freedom Summer, Norton said she arrived in Jackson where she met the local NAACP field director, who gave her a brief tour of town before putting her on a bus to the Delta. Later that night, her tour guide, Medgar Evers, was shot dead in his driveway.

Mike DeBonis covers local politics and government for The Washington Post. He also writes a blog and a political analysis column that runs on Fridays.
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Mike DeBonis | June 26