Senator Robert Byrd, Father of Constitution Day, Dies at 92
June 28, 2010
Senator Robert Byrd, the longest-serving member of Congress in United States history, passed away today at the age of 92. Among his many actions during his sixty-plus years in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate, one that may slip past the obituary pages is the creation of Constitution Day, designating September 17 as a day to "commemorate the formation and signing on September 17, 1787, of the Constitution and recognize all who, by coming of age or by naturalization, have become citizens."
Constitution Day is a welcome opportunity to educate students at a time when miseducation and misapplication of constitutional rights has become too common. FIRE looks forward to seeing how the day will be commemorated on college campuses this year—as they must, by law, which some might see as paradoxical. Of course, FIRE will continue our efforts to remind our nation's college students, faculty members, and administrators that we do not need a national holiday to remind us of the rightful place the Constitution occupies in our colleges and universities.