Don’t Let the Filibuster Block the Will of Majority
In April, when asked about passing voting rights for the American people, Majority Leader Schumer said, “Failure is not an option…If we wait until much past August then these horrible changes that these Republican legislatures are putting into effect may not be undone in time…so we have to get it done by then.”
But S1 is still sitting in the Senate even though in June, all 50 Senate Democrats voted to begin debate on strong voting rights legislation while a minority of Senate Republicans used the filibuster to prevent the debate from even beginning. As people across the country learn more about the filibuster’s role in blocking voting rights and other democracy reforms, pressure will continue to increase on Senate Democrats to eliminate the outdated and abused “Jim Crow relic.”
Fix Our Senate, Battle Born Collective, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Common Cause, Demand Justice, Indivisible, People for the American Way, Public Citizen, Stand Up America and over 80 other advocacy organizations sent a letter to Majority Leader Chuck Schumer yesterday afternoon calling on him to immediately bring voting rights legislation to the floor again, and not allow it to be blocked by the filibuster.
A majority of the Senate is now on record supporting strong voting rights, passing campaign finance reform, and curbing partisan gerrymandering. The only thing standing in the way is the outdated and abused filibuster.”
For the full text of the letter, see here and below.
Majority Leader Schumer,
Thank you for your leadership in unifying the Democratic caucus behind the need to debate and pass voting rights legislation. A majority of the Senate is now on record supporting strong voting rights, passing campaign finance reform, and curbing partisan gerrymandering. The only thing standing in the way is the outdated and abused filibuster.
Protecting Americans’ voting rights and strengthening the fundamentals of our democracy should not be partisan issues. However, the unfortunate reality is that Senator McConnell and his colleagues think voter suppression and gerrymandering are good for their political party. They want to continue to use the filibuster as their preferred weapon to silence voters.
Republicans’ insistence on obstructing the majority’s will in the U.S. Senate is matched by their effort to suppress the people’s vote in state legislatures. As the Brennan Center for Justice notes, 14 states have enacted more than 20 laws this year that will make it harder for Americans to vote. The burden will disproportionately impact Black and brown voters. Together, it creates a dangerous moment for American democracy and Americans’ basic rights, one from which we may not return.
We agree with your repeated promise that “failure is not an option” when it comes to voting rights. To ensure progress in the face of partisan obstruction, we, the undersigned organizations, urge you to hold another vote on voting rights legislation like the For The People Act before the August recess. Further delay risks a decade of Republican-controlled gerrymandering and Republican-controlled state voter suppression laws taking effect.
If, as expected, Senator McConnell and his Republican caucus again filibuster voting rights legislation – or once again filibuster simply allowing debate to begin – we urge you to move quickly to protect our democracy by eliminating the filibuster as a weapon that Senator McConnell can use to block voting rights legislation and other urgent reforms. The filibuster cannot be allowed to stand in the way of Americans’ voting rights and our democracy.
We thank you for your continued leadership and dedication to making progress for our country.
Fix Our Senate
Battle Born Collective
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington
People For the American Way
Stand Up America
Alliance for Justice
Alliance for Youth Action
America’s VoiceAmerican Baptist Home Mission Societies
Be A Hero
Bend the Arc: Jewish Action
Black Voters Matter Fund
Blue Wave Postcard Movement
Broward for Progress
Campaign for America’s Future
CBFD Indivisible San Diego
Center for Law and Social Justice at Medgar Evers College, CUNY
Citizens for Constitutional Integrity
Clean Elections Texas
Climate Hawks Vote
Communications Workers of America
Disciples Center for Public Witness
Don’t Look Away Pact
Dutchess County Progressive Action Alliance
Earth Action, Inc.
End Citizens United//Let America Vote Action Fund
Faith in Public Life Action Fund
Fix Democracy First
Indivisible Auburn, CA
Indivisible East Bay
Indivisible Georgia Coalition
Indivisible Media City Burbank
Indivisible Ross Valley
Indivisible Sonoma County
Lake Oconee Community Church
League of Conservation Voters
Mainers for Accountable Leadership
March for Our Lives National
Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Action
National Association of Social Workers
National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC)
National Employment Law Project
National Network for Immigrant & Refugee Rights
NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice
Newtown Action Alliance
Ohio Progressive Action Leaders
Progressive Turnout Project
RepresentUs New Mexico
Rise Up WV
Secure Elections Network
Social Eco Education (SEE-LA)
Social Security Works
Solidarity Sundays – Marin
Southern Christian Coalition
Students Against Voter Suppression
SURJ Marin – Showing Up for Racial Justice
Take Back the Court
The Workers Circle
Together We Will/Indivisible- Los Gatos
Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice
Writers for Democratic Action
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