(AP Photo / Jose Luis Magana)

How the Poor People’s Campaign Is Building a ‘New Electorate’

The Nation
January 21, 2019

A conversation with Reverend Liz Theoharis on the campaign’s broad agenda for 2019.
By Greg Kaufmann

On New Year’s Eve, Reverend Drs. Liz Theoharis and William Barber II, co-chairs of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, laid out the campaign’s plans for 2019. The Poor People’s Campaign will continue its pursuit of an audacious agenda: eradicating poverty and systemic racism; addressing ecological devastation, militarism and the war economy; and changing the narrative about poverty in this country from one that demonizes the poor to one which recognizes their strengths and vision while questioning the morality of current public policy.

Continue reading →

Poverty and inequality under Trump: ​​human ​​rights under ​​threat

The Guardian
June 26, 2018

The Guardian partners with the UN and the Graduate Institute in Geneva to discuss a burning issue for America.

A panel debate with Philip Alston (UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty), Rev Dr Liz Theoharis (co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival), Kenneth Roth (executive director, Human Rights Watch), Catherine Flowers (rural development manager, the Equal Justice Initiative). Moderated by Ed Pilkington (the Guardian’s chief reporter in the US)

On Tuesday, 26 June the Guardian moderated a discussion at the Graduate Institute in Geneva to discuss a burning issue for America: how the country’s vast inequality and the Trump administration’s apparent determination to exacerbate it are posing a direct threat to human rights.

Continue reading →

50 Years After MLK’s Poor People’s Campaign, 2,500+ Arrested Over 6 Weeks Calling for Moral Revival

Democracy Now
June 25, 2018

We feature voices of the thousands who marched on the nation’s capital Saturday for the Poor People’s Campaign. The mass demonstration followed six weeks of actions around the country and more than 2,500 arrests, as protesters join what they are calling a “moral revival” to demand an end to systemic racism, poverty, the war economy and ecological devastation. The march brought together activists from around the country more than 50 years after demonstrators converged on Washington, D.C., in 1968 to take up the cause that Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had been fighting for when he was assassinated on April 4, 1968: the original Poor People’s Campaign. Demonstrators rallied to protest widespread poverty just days after U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley slammed a new U.N. report slamming the Trump administration’s policies for worsening the state of poverty in the United States.

Continue reading →

Jeff Sessions got the Bible wrong. We care for strangers, not rob their rights

The Guardian
By Rev Dr William Barber and Rev Dr Liz Theoharis
June 19, 2018

Last week, the attorney general, Jeff Sessions, used scripture to justify closing America’s borders to those in need of refuge and tearing children away from their families.

“I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13 to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained them for the purpose of order,” Sessions said.

His remarks smack of theological heresy.

Continue reading →

Religious Leaders Shackled, Held in Jail Overnight, After Praying in Protest Outside Supreme Court

Democracy Now
June 13, 2018

Nine religious leaders were arrested on the steps of the Supreme Court on Monday in Washington, D.C., after participating in a national day of action for the new Poor People’s Campaign. They were handcuffed for five hours and jailed overnight in cells with cockroaches before being brought into court in ankle irons. The religious leaders were among 100 people arrested in Washington, D.C., Monday as part of the protests against poverty and racism. We speak with Rev. Liz Theoharis, who was one of the nine arrested Monday.

Continue reading →

Interview on the Off-Kilter Podcast

Off-Kilter Podcast
By Rebecca Vallas
June 1, 2018

One month after the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s assassination, a group of faith leaders resuscitated the civil rights icon’s final project by launching the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival. You’re probably familiar with campaign co-chair Reverend William Barber II from his leadership of the Moral Mondays movement. But less well known is his co-chair, the Reverend Dr. Liz Theoharis, who has spent the past two decades working as an organizer with groups led by people in poverty, such as the National Welfare Rights Union and the Coalition of Immokalee Workers. Rebecca speaks with Rev. Dr. Theoharis about what’s behind the campaign - and how it’s trying to change the narrative on poverty in the U.S.

Continue reading →

Fifty years after MLK’s death, activists revive his most radical project: the Poor People’s Campaign. Interview with Salon.

Paul Rosenberg
May 20, 2018

Will the poor “be with us always”? Rev. Liz Theoharis on repurposing the true, radical message of MLK and Jesus.

Fifty years after Martin Luther King Jr. first launched the idea in the last months of his life, this past week saw the kickoff of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, starting with an initial 40-day period of nonviolent direct action and civil disobedience. Described as “a moral fusion coalition that is multi-racial, multi-gendered, intergenerational, inter-faith and constitutionally grounded,” it shares King’s commitment to fighting the “Triplets of Evil” — systemic racism, poverty, and the war economy and militarism — but adds the interrelated problem of ecological devastation.

Continue reading →

Empowering the Souls of Poor Folk, with Rev. Liz Theoharis: Interview with Belabored Podcast

Belabored Podcast
By Sarah Jaffe and Michelle Chen
May 19, 2018

Rev. Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s campaign, joins us to talk about why people are marching across the country against poverty and for economic justice.

Half a century after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. set out on a march to demand equality now, the poor are still marching. But they’re no less impassioned and they come, as King once said, “to demand that the government address itself to the problem of poverty.” We speak to Rev. Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s campaign along with Rev. Dr. William Barber. The longtime welfare rights organizer talked about why people are marching across the country for economic justice and “moral revival.” They are making their political demands heard for the next several weeks but also hope to build power at the ballot box, in their workplaces, and in their communities.

Continue reading →

Reviving King’s Poor People’s Campaign: Interview by Rev. Welton C. Gaddy

State of Belief radio program
By Rev. Welton C. Gaddy
May 19, 2018

A new national moral revival launched last weekend with several hundred arrests of religious leaders on Capitol Hill and in events across the country. The new campaign harkens back to the effort to bring together marginalized people from across the country planned by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. before he was assassinated. Called the Poor People’s Campaign, it seeks to “challenge the evils of systemic racism, poverty, the war economy, ecological devastation and the nation’s distorted morality.” The Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis, who along with the Rev. William Barber is co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign, will join State of Belief host Rev. Welton C. Gaddy this week to learn more about this 40-day nationwide campaign of moral action – and how to get involved.

Continue reading →