US Congress Current Affairs

PM Narendra Modi to address US Congress on June 8

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been invited to address a joint meeting of the United States (US) Congress on June 8, 2016 during his visit to the US.

He was invited by President Barack Obama for a bilateral visit during the fourth nuclear summit. It was announced by the Speaker of the US House of Representative Paul Ryan.

PM Narendra Modi will be the fifth Indian Prime Minister to address a joint meeting of Congress, and the first since 2005.

Earlier, Prime Ministers Rajiv Gandhi (July 13, 1985), P V Narasimha Rao (May 18, 1994), Atal Bihari Vajpayee (September 14, 2000) and Manmohan Singh (July 19, 2005) had addressed the joint meeting of the US Congress.

It should be noted that the tradition of foreign leaders and dignitaries addressing US Congress began with the Marquis de Lafayette, a French aristocrat and military officer. He had addressed the House Chamber on December 10, 1824.

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Edward Brooke, first black elected US senator passes away

Edward Brooke, the first elected black US senator passed away on 3rd January 2015. He was 95.

He belonged to US’s Republican Party.

About Edward Brooke

  • He was elected to US Congress in 1966 by voters of Massachusetts State at a time of widespread racial unrest in the country.
  • He was also the first African-American to hold the post of attorney general of any state in US. He was attorney general Massachusetts State.
  • He had served as Congressmen in the US Senate till 1979 and was one of only nine African-Americans to do so, including US President Barack Obama.
  • His name i.e. the Brooke amendment was given to US federal housing act, passed in 1969, which limited to 25 percent the amount of income a family must pay for rent in public housing.
  • He lost his bid for the third term to Congress in 1978. After this defeat he returned to private law practice.
  • In 2004, he was awarded US Presidential Medal of Freedom. In 2009, he was also awarded Congressional Gold Medal, the highest award Congress has to honor civilians.

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