Monday marks the 150th anniversary of the ratification of the 15th Amendment, which gave African American men the right to vote in the United States.
Iowa was the 28th state to ratify the amendment, giving the amendment the necessary support to become part of the US Constitution on February 3, 1870.
The 150th anniversary of the ratification comes on caucuses day in Iowa, where voters are heading to precinct locations to caucus for their preferred candidate for president.
On Monday evening, the White House put out a statement celebrating the ratification of the amendment, and acknowledged the “challenges that minorities and women have overcome and the significant contributions they continue to make in advancing liberty and building a stronger America.”
“The ratification of the 15th Amendment was a tremendous step towards a more just society,” the statement by the White House reads. “Fifty years later, with the ratification of the 19th Amendment, African American women also secured the right to vote, alongside other adult women.”
“Today, as we recognize the remarkable progress we have made as a Nation in forming a more perfect Union,” the statement continues, “we acknowledge the challenges that minorities and women have overcome and the significant contributions they continue to make in advancing liberty and building a stronger America.”
South Carolina Democratic Rep. James Clyburn, the majority whip of the US House of Representatives, tweeted, “For much of its first 100 years, the right existed only on paper. And we still face voter discrimination.”
“We must continue to fight to remove all barriers to the ballot box,” Clybrun wrote.