The Andrew Goodman Foundation’s Statement On The Filibuster Of The Freedom To Vote: John R. Lewis Act

Late last night, the Senate failed to pass a procedural rules change that would have amended the filibuster and created a pathway for the passage of vital federal voting rights legislation. The Andrew Goodman Foundation condemns the Senate minority’s use of the filibuster, yet again, to block the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act. The Act, which was introduced and passed in the House of Representatives on January 13, combines the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. It would have protected and expanded the right to vote for all Americans, regardless of race or age. In addition to the provisions of its two predecessors, it would have prohibited state laws that make voting harder and ensured that Americans had their votes counted and certified

This latest usage of the filibuster to thwart imperative and popular voting rights legislation comes on the heels of President Biden’s trip to Atlanta and his remarks urging Congress to take whatever steps necessary, including reforming the filibuster, to protect Americans’ right to vote. Yet, with key Senators unable to secure enough votes to change the filibuster in order to pass the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act, the future of vital voting rights legislation hangs in the balance. But we must not give up. We will continue, with all our might, to call for federal voting rights legislation that preserves our democracy.

In President Biden’s speech, he evoked the sacrifice of Andrew Goodman, James Earl Chaney, and Michael Schwerner. At The Andrew Goodman Foundation, we are dedicated to combating racial discrimination and restrictions to the right to vote so that Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner’s sacrifice is never in vain and their legacy lives on. Despite this setback, we will work tirelessly with our Andrew Goodman Network to register voters, provide them with the information and resources they need, get out the vote, and advocate for equitable access to the ballot box for us all.