Martin Luther King Jr. wanted to shut down Washington in the spring of 1968. He was organizing what he hoped would be the longest-running protest in the history of the nation's capital. King called it the Poor People's Campaign. He intended to dramatize the suffering of the nation's poor by bringing them to the capital. Poor people would live together on the National Mall - the long strip of land between the U.S. Capitol and the Lincoln Memorial - and engage in widespread civil disobedience. King wanted to force the federal government to deal with poverty.