Democracy Initiative on GOP Senate Blockage Against Bills on Voting Rights, Money in Politics and Gerrymandering

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

For Immediate Release:
Contact:
Roger Kerson, rkerson@democracyinitiative.org, 734.645.0535

Democracy Initiative on GOP Senate Blockage Against Bills on
Voting Rights, Money in Politics and Gerrymandering:
"Voters Will Be Outraged by This Latest Perversion of Democracy"

The following statement is from Charly Carter, executive director of the Democracy Initiative.  

“How is it possible that one person, representing one state, can effectively disenfranchise millions of voters? That’s what we saw overnight when undemocratic Senate rules allowed a single senator, Ted Cruz, to block key provisions to protect voting rights of millions of Americans across the country.  

“Voters across the country will be outraged by this latest perversion of our democracy. It’s time to fix or nix the Jim Crow filibuster, which has paralyzed our government at the worse possible moment. We need rapid, forceful responses to intersecting crises of public health, racial injustice, economic inequality and climate catastrophe. Instead, our lives are at risk from endless obstruction and partisan gridlock.”

Background:  

The leadership in U.S. Senate scheduled a key procedural vote early this morning on the For the People Act (FTPA), a transformational voting rights and fair elections bill.

Senator Cruz, backed by his GOP colleagues prevented even the start of debate on FTPA, and also blocked action on two other democracy bills: a measure to end partisan gerrymandering; and a bill to limit the tidal wave of special interest money that pollutes our politics.  

With our democracy at risk, the Republican position is no discussion, no debate and no action.  

Senate Majority Leader Schumer said that the For the People Act and related legislation will be first on the agenda when the Senate returns to business in September. At that time, these bills will face a near-certain Republican filibuster.

Earlier this month, more than 50 labor, environmental, civil rights and civic groups, convened by the Democracy Initiative, wrote to Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer about the need to fix or nix the filibuster. 

“Some of us support the full elimination of the filibuster,” the letter stated, “and all of us believe changes are necessary.” 

The Democracy Initiative is a coalition of 75 organizations with a collective 45 million members fighting for workers, civil rights, social justice and the environment. DI partner organizations are united in their commitment to realizing the promise of American democracy where all people have an equal seat at the governance table. 

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