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Congresswoman Terri Sewell wants the Civil Rights marchers of Selma to be recognized by Congress for the work and sacrifices they made in the fight for voting rights for African Americans.

Rep. Sewell joined Roland Martin Thursday on “NewsOne Now” to discuss the bill she has put forth in order to award the “foot soldiers” of Selma the Congressional Gold Medal for their participation in Bloody Sunday, Turnaround Tuesday and/or the final 54-mile march from Selma to the capitol in Montgomery.

“I think that they’re so worthy,” said Sewell. “There are so many sung and unsung heroes” who she feels need to be recognized.


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Sewell told Martin, she “dropped the bill” with support from the entire Alabama delegation. “I think it’s longtime overdue that Selma, my hometown, gets its proper due as the epicenter of America’s voting rights movement.”

Rep. Sewell also said she hopes that people will go and see “Selma,” directed by Ava DuVernay and “feel renewed and committed to the importance of voting” in response to the “renewed assault on voting.”

“It’s now more important than ever that we talk about the importance of the power of the ballot.”

Amelia Boynton, who was responsible for convincing Dr. Martin Luther King that he should to come to Selma, accompanied Congresswoman Sewell to this year’s State of the Union address.

Prior to President Obama addressing the nation, Mr. Obama told the 103-year-old Boynton, “I’m making this speech tonight because of you.” Rep. Sewell said after hearing that a tear came down Boynton’s cheek.

Listen to Martin and Congresswoman Terri Sewell discuss her proposed bill to award the “foot soldiers” of Selma a Congressional Gold Medal and the history of the marches in her hometown in the audio clip below.

Be sure to watch “NewsOne Now” with Roland Martin, weekdays at 9 a.m. EST on TV One.

Subscribe to the “NewsOne Now” Audio Podcast on iTunes.

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