Group welcomes momentum and bipartisan support for the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act
ATLANTA — Today, Fair Fight Action, the national voting rights group founded by Stacey Abrams, released a statement calling on Senators to heed the pleas of their constituents and expeditiously deliver critical voting rights legislation by whatever procedural means necessary.
While today’s vote to advance the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act showed momentum and majority, bipartisan support, cloture was opposed by 48 Senate Republicans who denied debate on the bill, which is supported by a majority of Americans. Senator Murkowski (R-AK) voted with Senate Democrats to advance the bill.
Together, the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act will make significant progress in protecting the freedom to vote, help ensure all eligible Americans can safely and freely cast their ballots, and help prevent state lawmakers from sabotaging election administration.
Fair Fight Action Founder Stacey Abrams issued the following statement:
“We welcome the momentum and bipartisan support behind the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, and we appreciate Senator Murkowski recognizing the necessity of debate on a bill that will serve as a guardrail for our democracy and protect the freedom to vote. Along with Senators Schumer, Manchin, Durbin, Leahy, and other Senate Democrats, Senator Murkowski has chosen to put patriotism over partisanship. Today’s vote demonstrates that there is majority, bipartisan support and a clear path forward to deliver this bill to the American people—despite the ongoing obstructionism of Leader McConnell, who refuses to allow debate on widely popular legislation. Their rejection of earnest efforts to begin debate is a chilling dereliction of duty.
State legislatures across the country are ready to launch a new wave of anti-voter bills immediately upon returning to session in 2022. Redistricting is already underway and time is of the essence to defend the will of our nation’s voters. If Senators fail to act, they will be complicit in this unpatriotic attempt to silence the voices of eligible American voters. It is imperative that America’s Senators pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act immediately. We must restore the Senate.”
There is broad support for Congress to take action to protect the freedom to vote. A November 2020 Navigator survey found more than three in five Americans support the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. The Freedom to Vote Act and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act are key tools in protecting the freedom to vote across the country—particularly for voters of color. With these two bills, Congress has a once-in-a-decade chance to protect voters from partisan gerrymandering.
Through the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, Senate Democrats and Senator Murkowski have negotiated a bill that helps protect the freedom to vote for all eligible Americans by restoring the Voting Rights Act of 1965—once again requiring states and jurisdictions with a history of discrimination to preclear changes to their election laws. The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act also includes the critical Native American Voting Rights Act (NAVRA), which protects voting rights for Indigenous communities who face a myriad of barriers to voting.