The bill passed unanimously, and the post office at 1730 18th St. in Bakersfield will now become the Merle Haggard Post Office Building.
The United States House of Representatives voted on Tuesday (July 11) to recognize country legend Merle Haggard by re-naming the U.S. post office in Bakersfield, Calif., in his honor, the Los Angeles Times reports.
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R – CA) represents California’s 23rd district, and he brought the bill to the floor, giving an impassioned speech arguing for the honor. Haggard was born near Bakersfield, and he became one of the leading progenitors of the Bakersfield Sound, a movement that swept country music in the 1960s that featured more of an emphasis on electric guitars and simpler, more aggressive arrangements.
“Mr. Speaker, you can take a look back on American history. You can see figures standing tall who spoke for the everyday working man. Following a long tradition of Whitman and Twain, Merle Haggard was a man who knew America instinctively, because he lived an American life. It wasn’t a life for the movies, but it was all more compelling because it was all more real. That is the reason they called him the poet of the common man,” McCarthy stated.