Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement in observance of Juneteenth, which was officially made a national holiday through legislation passed in Congress and signed into law by the president this week.

“On Juneteenth, we pause to remember a monumental moment in American history more than 150 years ago, and we celebrate its establishment as our newest national holiday. As we reflect on the rightful end of slavery in our country and the emancipation of African Americans held in bondage, we reaffirm our nation’s founding ideals of liberty and justice for all. Indeed, we should draw strength from Juneteenth’s role in liberating our history and further refining and defining what our great union was designed to represent for all – regardless of color or creed.”