Everett McKinley Dirksen - An American politician of the Republican Party who represented Illinois in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate.
Dirksen (1896-1969), represented central Illinois in the U.S. House of Representatives, 1933-1949. He later won four elections to the U.S. Senate, beginning in 1950. He rose through the leadership ranks of the Republican party in the Senate as chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (1951-1954), Republican whip (1957-1959), and Senate Minority Leader (1959-1969). Dirksen played key roles in passing the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (1963), the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Open Housing Act of 1968.
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