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History As It Happens

Feb 22, 2022

Did you know that since 1860 more than 400 rabbis have delivered the opening prayer or blessing that starts each day of Congress? In a nation founded upon religious toleration, articulated in George Washington's letter to the Jews of Newport in 1790, some remarkable rabbis have prayed at the very center of American democracy. We now know more about this overlooked slice of history because of Howard Mortman, the communications director at C-SPAN. His first book, "When Rabbis Bless Congress," documents the life and times of Jewish leaders who left their mark on the U.S. Capitol.