Longest Filibuster: Senator Strom Thurmond

The record for the longest filibuster in the United States Senate is held by Senator Strom Thurmond. On August 28, 1957, Thurmond filibustered for a total of 24 hours and 18 minutes straight.

Senator Strom Thurmond
Senator Strom Thurmond

His filibuster was aimed at opposing the Civil Rights Act of 1957, which aimed to protect the voting rights of African Americans.

During his marathon filibuster, Thurmond read from various documents, including the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the United States Constitution, in an attempt to delay the vote on the civil rights legislation.

Thurmond’s filibuster remains one of the most famous and enduring examples of this parliamentary tactic in U.S. history.

It is worth noting that Thurmond’s stance on civil rights evolved over the years, and he later played a role in the passage of subsequent civil rights legislation.


The longest filibuster in the history of the United States Senate was conducted by Senator Strom Thurmond, a Democrat from South Carolina, on August 28, 1957.

He spoke for more than 24 hours minutes against the Civil Rights Act of 1957, a bill that aimed to protect the voting rights of Black Americans.

He prepared himself by dehydrating his body and planned to use a bucket to urinate if needed. He read from various documents, such as state election laws and court decisions, to stall the vote.

Despite his efforts, the bill passed and was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.  Thurmond’s filibuster is widely regarded as a racist act that opposed racial integration and equality.