Over One Thousand Groups Representing over Three Million Americans Ask President Biden to Take Action Matching His Strong Words in Philadelphia on Voting Rights

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Yesterday, 1,057 grassroots advocacy groups and nonprofits representing nearly 3,315,520 Americans from 33 states sent a letter to President Biden thanking him for his powerful speech about voting rights in Philadelphia this month and asking him to use every lever at his disposal to pass S.1, including pushing the Senate to removing the filibuster as an obstacle. The letter decries the President’s omission of any mention of the filibuster in his speech, and urges the President to take decisive action beyond words to pass the For the People Act to save democracy. 

“If the filibuster stands, Senators in the minority will use it to veto S.1. Soon after that, Republicans will begin drawing uncompetitive district lines for the 2022 elections and they will lock in minority rule,” said Nancy Latham, a leader of Indivisible East Bay in California. “Given the President’s clear understanding of the full-blown democratic crisis we face, organizers and advocates across the country expect him to do all he can to make sure that the Democratic caucus ends or amends the filibuster so that it no longer stands in the way of S.1.”

“Georgia Indivisible members and other grassroots advocates and volunteers were disappointed to hear President Biden’s statement suggesting we could out-organize voter suppression,” said Martha Shockey, a Co-Convener of the Indivisible Georgia Coalition. “That is what we’ve been doing for over four years at great personal cost to the thousands of volunteers we recruited. We built out a plan that gave the President the power he has. We need for him to use that power to protect voting rights and protect democracy. There is no greater threat at this moment.”

“You see, for our democracy to work, the people elect leaders to represent them to govern and to protect our rights,” said Alexander Montalvo, a leader of Indivisible TX Lege. “We elect new leaders when they fail to do this. Texas state Legislators are trying to pass laws that will limit our ability to do just that. Don’t Mess With Texas Voters. Let us vote, because Texas Deserves Better. We need Congress to pass voting rights legislation with the For The People Act to stop these attempts of limiting votes from Texans and Americans.”

Since his Philadelphia speech, organizers and advocates have become increasingly worried about whether the President is willing to do whatever it takes to support the passage of S.1. He has said in a CNN town hall that he does not want to end the filibuster, because it will “throw the entire Congress into chaos and nothing will get done.” And he may be depending on organizers to counteract this assault on voting rights by working even harder to get out the vote: the NYTimes reported that “White House officials and close allies of the president have expressed confidence that it is possible to ‘out-organize voter suppression.”

Read the Letter:

July 28, 2021

Joseph R. Biden, Jr.

President of the United States

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW

Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear President Biden:

Thank you for your forceful words on July 13 that call the fight for voting rights the “most significant test for democracy since the Civil War.” As  progressives who have long advocated for the passage of the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, we strongly agree about the existential challenges to our democracy. 

Actions, though, speak louder than words. Your unique position in the presidential bully pulpit allows you to do no less than to save our constitutional right to the vote.

We, the undersigned – over one thousand national, state, and regional groups and coalitions, representing a total of over three million  individual members – have taken part in multiple mobilizations to fight for the freedom to vote, including 375 Deadline for Democracy events nationwide during the Senate’s July Recess. As part of that campaign, we asked our Democratic Senators to do everything they could to pass S.1 – and we asked our Republican Senators to explain just exactly why they are for voter suppression. And now, with time running out to pass the For the People Act, we turn – as Americans – to you.

More forceful steps are imperative to bring together the entire Democratic Caucus in the Senate to send federal voting rights legislation to the Resolute Desk for your signature:

  • You laid out the problem cogently, but you did not delineate a path to getting the For the People Act passed in the Senate (S.1). Most importantly, you did not even mention the filibuster as the key obstacle to passing S.1. 

The Senators who have not yet championed filibuster reform need to hear from you. They need to hear loud and clear that the path to S.1 must include reforming or eliminating the filibuster. They need to hear you acknowledge that bringing 10 Republican Senators on board to pass any version of S.1 is impossible – and therefore, that amending the filibuster is the only way forward.

  • You have not indicated that you will step up the efforts of the White House to pass S.1. The level of effort that you have exhibited to ensure the success of the infrastructure bills is warranted, but we have yet to see evidence of such an effort with regard to S.1. 

President Johnson used every lever of power available to him to ensure that the 1965 Voting Rights Act passed. The For the People Act is at least as consequential as the Voting Rights Act – and in some ways more so:

  • The Brennan Center for Justice is tracking almost 400 bills in 48 states aimed at voter suppression. These bills are designed primarily to prevent Black and Brown voters from casting a ballot; the For the People Act is fundamentally about racial justice.
  • Over 1000 Political Scientists signed a letter warning that the threat of partisan gerrymandering, if “left unchecked, … threatens to solidify minority rule in state legislatures and Congress. If this happens, America will no longer be a democracy.” The For the People Act would address voter suppression and gerrymandering in the states.
  • The “new coalition” you called for already exists; what we need is for you to have the backs of all those already collaborating to ensure that S.1 passes. Your call did not recognize the hard work and bravery of multiple, overlapping coalitions and the organizations that have engaged in deep organizing for years, nor did it recognize the months-long full-court press of grassroots mobilization for the freedom to vote. These include the Poor People’s Campaign, the Transformative Justice Coalition, Black Voters Matter, Fair Fight, the Declaration for American Democracy, Fix Our Senate, Public Citizen, Common Cause, Indivisible, Democracy for America 2021, and Democracy Docket. 

We understand that you, Vice President Harris, and your staff have been meeting with Civil Rights Leaders. We know that you are listening to their hard-won wisdom, and we ask that you take their advice.  

It is clear that you, Vice President Harris, and your administration have a crystal-clear understanding of what is at stake, and you believe deeply in the righteousness of federal legislation that can begin to repair, protect, and expand our democracy. We need you to use the full powers of persuasion and pressure available to you to ensure that Senate Democrats pass the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. We need you to make this your highest priority, for if democracy fails, everything else fails with it. 

Since your forceful and passionate speech on July 13, we feel there’s an urgent need for you to make the case to all Democratic Senators sitting on the filibuster fence that this vital task must entail eliminating, reforming, or creating an exception to the filibuster, and then making it clear to Senators and the public that the filibuster – a Jim Crow relic that gives the minority veto power over the will of the majority – simply must not stand in the way of our democracy.

President Biden: history has its eyes on you. 

Signed,

1,057 Grassroots Organizations and Nonprofits from across the Country

Representing 3,315,520 Individual Members 

NATIONAL: 324 Organizations Representing 2,623,020 Members

Coalitions 

  • Build Back Better USA (25 organizations)
  • Declaration for American Democracy (230 organizations)
  • Just Democracy (44 organizations)
  • Women of Color Coalition (10 organizations)

Organizations 

  • Blue Future
  • Blue Wave Postcard Movement
  • DemCast
  • Democracy 21
  • Face the Music Collective
  • Faith in Public Life Action
  • Field Team 6
  • Free Speech For People
  • Friends of the Earth
  • Newtown Action Alliance
  • People’s Parity Project
  • Saratoga Warren Washington Progressive Action 
  • Secure Elections Network
  • Students Against Voter Suppression
  • Un-PAC
  • Vote.Org
  • The Workers Circle

ALABAMA: 1 Organization Representing 1,965 Members

Organization 

  • Birmingham Indivisible

ALASKA: 1 Organization Representing 300 Members

Organization 

  • Stand UP Alaska

ARIZONA: 3 Organizations Representing 1,300 Members

Organizations 

  • Civic Engagement Beyond Voting
  • Yuma County Indivisible

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  • Arizona Dream Act Coalition

ARKANSAS: 6 Organizations Representing 2,000 Members

Coalition

  • Indivisible Arkansas (6 organizations: Boone County Indivisible, Indivisible Buffalo River, Indivisible Eureka Springs, Indivisible Fort Smith, Indivisible Little Rock and Central Arkansas, Ozark Indivisible)

CALIFORNIA: 134 Organizations Representing 114,017 Members

Coalitions 

  • California Poor People’s Campaign (7 regions (counted as organizations))
  • CD4 Indivisible Network (3 organizations)
  • Indivisible San Diego Coalition (6 organizations: CBFD Indivisible San Diego, Change Begins With ME, Indivisible 92116, Indivisible North San Diego County, Indivisible Resistance San Diego, Indivisible San Diego Persist)
  • Levin 49 (3 organizations)
  • Stand Strong LA Indivisible (25 organizations)

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  • 350 Bay Area Action (10 organizations)
  • Cancel the Contract AV (30 organizations)

Organizations 

  • Cloverdale Indivisible
  • Feminists in Action Los Angeles
  • IndivisibleCA25 Simi Valley Porter Ranch
  • Indivisible CA-33
  • Indivisible CA-37
  • Indivisible CA-43 MoveOn – Playa Del Rey/Playa Vista
  • Indivisible CA: Green Team
  • Indivisible East Bay
  • Indivisible Elmwood
  • Indivisible Fallbrook
  • Indivisible Fortuna
  • Indivisible Healdsburg
  • Indivisible Marin
  • Indivisible Mendocino
  • Indivisible Napa
  • Indivisible OC 46
  • Indivisible ReSisters Walnut Creek
  • Indivisible Sacramento
  • Indivisible San Jose
  • Indivisible San Pedro
  • Indivisible Santa Cruz County
  • Indivisible Sausalito
  • IndivisibleSF 
  • Indivisible SF Peninsula and CA-14
  • Indivisible Sonoma County
  • Indivisible South Bay-LA (ISBLA)
  • Indivisible South Peninsula
  • Indivisible Stanislaus
  • Indivisible Ventura
  • Indivisible Windsor
  • Indivisible Yolo
  • Livermore Indivisible
  • Northridge Indivisible
  • Orchard City Indivisible
  • Progressive Mariposa
  • San Fernando Valley Indivisible
  • Together We Will/Indivisible – Los Gatos

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  • Call 4 Change
  • Making Waves for Democracy
  • OFA East Bay Central
  • ROAR Resistance
  • Santa Clarita Valley Democrats
  • Sister District Marin
  • SoCal Blue
  • Swing Left Marin
  • Swing Left Tri-Valley
  • Venice Resistance
  • Women’s Alliance Los Angeles 

COLORADO: 32 Organizations Representing 16,726 Members

Coalition 

  • Indivisible CO Action Network (30 organizations)

Organizations

  • Indivisible Denver
  • Indivisible Front Range Resistance

CONNECTICUT: 42 Organizations Representing 1,975 Members

Coalition 

  • Per Sisters / Indivisibles (40 organizations)

Organizations in the Per Sisters / Indivisibles Coalition, signing on independently

  • PerSisters CT / Shoreline Indivisible CT 
  • PerSisters of New Haven

Organizations

  • Individual Democracy Actions

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  • Bridgeport Generation Now Votes

FLORIDA: 18 Organizations Representing 17,000 Members

Coalition 

  • Indivisible Florida Network (17 organizations)

Organization

  • Broward for Progress

GEORGIA: 46 Organizations Representing 20,215 Members

Coalition 

  • Indivisible Georgia Coalition (45 organizations)

Organization

  • Represent GA Action Network Inc.

HAWAI’I: 6 Organizations Representing 600 Members

Coalition 

  • Indivisible Hawaii Statewide Network (6 organizations: Hui Aloha o Maui, Kauai Indivisible, Indivisible Hawaii – Oahu, Indivisible Maui, Ka’u Voices – Big Island, Indivisible  Windward – Oahu, North Hawaii Action Network – Big Island, Volcano Community Action Network – Big Island)

ILLINOIS: 16 Organizations Representing 16,740 Members

Coalition 

  • Indivisible Chicago Alliance (14 organizations)

Organizations

  • Indivisible Evanston
  • IndivisibleNWIL Crystal Lake

INDIANA: 1 Organization Representing 2,300 Members

Organization

  • Indivisible Indianapolis

MAINE: 4 Organizations Representing 18,225 Members

Organizations

  • Acadia Action
  • Indivisible Bangor
  • Indivisible MDI

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  • Mainers for Accountable Leadership

MARYLAND: 2 Organizations Representing 78 Members

Organizations

  • Indivisible Howard County
  • Indivisible Worcester Maryland

MASSACHUSETTS: 48 Organizations Representing 30,000 Members

Coalition 

  • Indivisible Mass Coalition (47 organizations: Boston Indivisible Progressive Action Group, Boston Persists, Cambridge Area Stronger Together, Cambridge Somerville for Change, Cape Cod Women for Change, Concord Indivisible, Franklin County Continuing the Political Revolution (FCCPR), Greater Andover Indivisible, Greater Haverhill Indivisible, Greylock Together, Indivisible Acton Area, Indivisible BTW (Billerica/Tewksbury/Wilmington), Indivisible Canton MA, Indivisible Carlisle: Carlisle Rising to Action, Indivisible MA Metrowest & District 5, Indivisible Martha’s Vineyard, Indivisible Mystic Valley, Indivisible Nantucket, Indivisible Nashoba, Indivisible Northampton, Indivisible Outer Cape, Indivisible Pittsfield, Indivisible Plymouth, Indivisible Rise Newburyport, Indivisible South Street Northampton, Indivisible SouthEast Mass, Indivisible Williamsburg, Indivisible Worcester, JP Progressives, Lower Cape Indivisible: United in Hope, Marching Forward, Mass Together We Can, Massachusetts 1st Indivisible Resistance, massaction4justice, Milton Indivisible Against Trump, Minuteman Indivisible, Neighbors United Indivisible, North Reading Indivisible, Pioneer Valley Resist Coalition, Powerful Organized People Huddle (POP Huddle), Progressive Dedham-Westwood-Norwood, Progressive Needham, Progressive Watertown, Progressive West Roxbury – Roslindale, Rise Up Western Mass Indivisible, Voices Rising Together, Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice & the Environment)

Organizations in the Indivisible Mass Coalition, signing on independently 

  • Greylock Together
  • Indivisible Acton Area
  • Indivisible Canton
  • Indivisible Martha’s Vineyard
  • Indivisible Outer Cape
  • Indivisible Northampton
  • Indivisible-RISE Newburyport
  • Rise Up Western Mass Indivisible
  • Voices Rising Together

Organization

  • Swing Blue Alliance

MICHIGAN: 50 Organizations Representing 6,500 Members

Coalition 

  • Statewide Indivisible Michigan (50 organizations)

MINNESOTA: 2 Organizations Representing 1,850 Members

Organizations

  • Edina Indivisible
  • Indivisible St. Peter/Greater Mankato

MISSOURI: 3 Organizations Representing 625 Members

Organizations

  • Clayton Huddle – Indivisible Chapter
  • Equity Action Collective
  • Indivisible St Louis

NEVADA: 3 Organizations Representing 1,580 Members

Organizations

  • Indivisible Las Vegas OWLs
  • Indivisible Northern Nevada
  • Indivisible Nye County Prickly Pears

NEW JERSEY: 2 Organizations Representing 1,700 Members

Organizations

  • Indivisible Cranbury 
  • SOMA Action

NEW MEXICO: 2 Organization Representing 2,750 Members 

Organizations

  • Indivisible Nob Hill
  • Indivisible Santa Fe

NEW YORK: 20 Organizations Representing 11,688 Members 

Organizations

  • Bethlehem NY Indivisible
  • Hudson Valley Indivisible
  • Indivisible Harlem
  • Indivisible Nation BK
  • Indivisible New Rochelle
  • Indivisible Rochester
  • Indivisible Ulster / NY19
  • Indivisible Westchester Districts 6&7
  • Larchmont/Mamaroneck Indivisible
  • Move Forward NY CD19
  • New York Indivisible
  • Olive Action
  • Upper West Side MoveOn/Indivisible Action Group

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  • Citizen Action of New York
  • Downtown Women for Change
  • Markers for Democracy
  • Mountaintop Progressives
  • Swing Left Target Majority NYC
  • U-Act (Ulster Activists)
  • The Wednesday Group

NORTH CAROLINA: 1 Organization Representing 300 Members

Organization

  • Indivisible Guilford County

OHIO: 40 Organizations Representing 50,000 Members 

Coalition

  • Ohio Progressive Action Leaders (OPAL) (40 organizations)

OREGON: 50 Organizations Representing 120,000 Members

Coalitions

  • Consolidated Oregon Indivisible Network (COIN) (50 organizations)
  • ORD2 Indivisible (10 organizations, included within COIN)

Organizations in COIN, signing on independently

  • Act for Democracy
  • Florence Indivisible
  • Indivisible Clackamas District 5
  • North Coast Progressive Action
  • Oregon Community Organizers
  • Protect Oregon’s Progress
  • Indivisible Oregon
  • Indivisible Southern Oregon

PENNSYLVANIA: 11 Organizations Representing 21,175 Members

Coalition

  • PA-D5 Indivisible Coalition (6 organizations: Bowling Green Patriots Indivisible, Delco PA Indivisible, Havertown Area Community Action Network (H-CAN) Indivisible, Indivisible Main Line South, Indivisible: Narberth and Beyond, Indivisible Upper Darby)

Organizations

  • Indivisible Philadelphia

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  • Empower
  • National Council of Jewish Women – PA
  • Order of the Phoenix
  • Progress PA

TENNESSEE: 10 Organizations Representing 1,500 Members

Coalition

  • Indivisible Tennessee (10 organizations)

TEXAS: 42 Organizations Representing 167,503 Members

Coalition

  • Texas Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry (36 organizations)

Organizations

  • Indivisible Austin
  • Indivisible TX Lege 
  • SATX Indivisible

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  • Common Cause Texas
  • Progress Texas
  • The Young and The Politics

UTAH: 1 Organization Representing 1,023 Members

Organization

  • Utah’s CD4 Coalition

VIRGINIA: 68 Organization Representing 27,885 Members

Coalitions

  • Earth Rise Indivisible (10 organizations)
  • Virginia Grassroots Coalition (50 organizations)

Organizations in the Virginia Grassroots Coalition, signing on independently

  • Fairfax Indivisible
  • Indivisible Northern Virginia
  • New River Valley Indivisible
  • Williamsburg JCC Indivisible

Organizations

  • Herndon-Reston Indivisible
  • Indivisible Nova West
  • Indivisible Virginia 

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  • Lewinsville Faith in Action
  • Vienna Neighbors United
  • Virginia Justice Democrats
  • Virginia Muslim Political Action Committee
  • Virginia Political Cooperative

WASHINGTON: 64 Organizations Representing 27,030 Members

Coalition

  • Build Back Better WA (62 organizations)

Organizations

  • Olympia Indivisible

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  • Fix Democracy First

WEST VIRGINIA: 3 Organizations Representing 4,500 Members

Organizations

  • Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Action
  • Rise Up WV
  • Talk Radio Project

WISCONSIN: 1 Organization Representing 700 Members

Organization

  • Indivisible Madison

DemCast is an advocacy-based 501(c)4 nonprofit. We have made the decision to build a media site free of outside influence. There are no ads. We do not get paid for clicks. If you appreciate our content, please consider a small monthly donation.


DemCast is an advocacy-based 501(c)4 nonprofit. We have made the decision to build a media site free of outside influence. There are no ads. We do not get paid for clicks, but are sustained solely on donations from grassroots supporters. Because our revenue isn’t click-driven, we don’t take in any direct revenue from the creative contributions of grassroots activists who post on the site. This sets us apart from other media sites. And we’re proud of that.

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