Interview with Rev. Andrew Young
QUESTION 34
INTERVIEWER:

DID YOU HAVE A SENSE OF JOHNSON'S RESPONSE TO THAT? REVEREND KING WENT TO MEET WITH JOHNSON TO PUSH HIM TOWARDS VOTING RIGHTS LEGISLATION. THERE IS SOME SUGGESTION THAT HE WANTED IT, HE JUST DIDN'T FEEL THE TIME WAS RIGHT, AND THERE IS ANOTHER SENSE THAT HE WAS BEING DRAGGED TOWARD IT. WHAT IS YOUR SENSE OF IT?

Rev. Andrew Young:

Well, I think that when we first met with Lyndon Johnson, ah, Lyndon Johnson was under the influence of J. Edgar Hoover, because Martin had just come back from receiving the Nobel Prize, and we were invited to Washington, and instead of being taken to the White House we were taken to the Justice Department where we met with Nicholas Katzenbach. And then Vice President Hubert Humphrey came over, and it was only in the middle of that meeting, ah, that suddenly they jumped up and said, "Look, the President wants to see you at the White House." And we got the impression that, that Lyndon Johnson, you know, just didn't want to be that much involved, at that point. When we talked to him, he explained to us all of the reasons why there couldn't be another civil rights bill because he had just gotten through that civil rights bill from '64, ah, in July 2nd, I think it was. This was early December, and he didn't see how he could introduce new civil rights legislation. We made the appeal for voting rights legislation. We made the appeal for equal job opportunity, and some kinds of affirmative action. And he said he agreed, but he just didn't see this coming in Congress in this session.