Introducing Friends of the Institute

As a tribute to Senator Kennedy's 47-year career, gifts of $47 and up recognize you as a Friend of the Institute.

Great Senate Debates Program


Senate Chamber The United States Senate has long been the scene of some of this nation’s most important oratory. The Institute brings these decisive deliberations to life in its newest program, Great Senate Debates. Blending live performance with historic film footage and archival images, this inspiring 20-minute program examines the context and importance of crucial turning points in Senate history, and reflects on their impact on our lives today.

Current debate

The current Great Senate Debate is the Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy. This program explores how America’s fear of communism allowed for and encouraged the rise of Joseph McCarthy, and how the Senate used its traditions and institutions to stop his excesses.



Don’t miss some of the most important speeches ever made on the Senate floor. Get your tickets now.

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Great Senate Debates is a daily program that takes place in Institute's Senate Chamber Tuesday through Sunday.

Great Senate Debates: The Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy is currently running in the Institute’s Senate Chamber Tuesday through Sunday.

What you’ll experience

Experience democracy firsthand through interactive exhibits, live votes, and a full-scale replica of the Senate Chamber.