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"The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund is simply the best civil rights law firm in American history." -- President Obama

News Updates

  • Republicans Target Kagans Past


    The path to the Supreme Court continues for nominee Elena Kagan as her confirmation hearings continue. During Tuesdays proceedings, Republican members took Kagans clerkship and association with the late Justice Thurgood Marshall to task. They questioned Marshalls legal career and activist record. Sherrilyn Ifill, a professor of law at the University of Maryland, and John Payton, director-counsel and president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, discuss Marshalls legacy and the scrutiny over Kagans service to the first African-American Supreme Court justice.

  • William Taylor, Vigorous Rights Defender, Dies at 78


    William L. Taylor, who as a lawyer, lobbyist and government official for more than a half century had significant roles in pressing important civil rights cases and in drafting and defending civil rights legislation, died Monday in Bethesda, Md. He was 78 and lived in Washington. 

  • Statement from LDF on Senate Attacks on Thurgood Marshall


    (Washington, DC) – During the Senate confirmation hearings of Elena Kagan to be Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, several Senators have disparaged Justice Thurgood Marshall, his judicial philosophy, and his connection to Elena Kagan, who once clerked for Justice Marshall. In response to these attacks, NAACP LDF President and Director-Counsel John Payton issues the following statement: 

  • LDF Supports the Nomination of Elena Kagan to Supreme Court


    (Washington, DC) – With only days until Senate confirmation hearings begin on the nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (LDF) has released a report examining the nominee’s civil rights record.

  • John Payton's Letter to the Editor


    Re "Felons can't vote, and that's fair," Opinion, June 13

    This September, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral argument in Farrakhan vs. Gregoire, a case challenging the validity of Washington state's felon disfranchisement law under the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965.