WASHINGTON, D.C. - Yesterday evening, GOP U.S. Senators filibustered a cloture vote that prevents S. 1, the For the People Act, from being debated on the floor of the body.
The following statement is by Margaret Huang, President and CEO of the Southern Poverty Law Center:
“Make no mistake. This is a critical moment in U.S. history where the health and stability of our democracy is on the line.
“Through three centuries now of U.S. history, the federal government has been called to secure, defend, and expand basic voting rights for citizens across the country, especially Black Americans in the Deep South. Today’s vote by Republican senators to filibuster and block even debate on the For the People Act, a bill supported by an overwhelming majority of Americans, is unacceptable.
“The filibuster is in no way acting as a ‘guardrail of democracy’ in 2021. Rather, it is being weaponized to further destabilize our democracy and harm voters.
“Black and Brown voters, who delivered the Senate to Democrats, are now facing retaliation from white, GOP-controlled state legislatures in the Deep South and across the country. More than 400 bills have been introduced around the country to limit access to the ballot box.
“Senate Democrats must immediately examine and exhaust every legislative mechanism possible, up to and including eliminating the filibuster, to ensure passage of the For the People Act if they hope to block these 2021 versions of Jim Crow laws and ensure all Americans have a voice in our democracy.”