October 20, 2021
WASHINGTON — Representative Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, issued the following statement after the Senate failed to advance the Freedom to Vote Act:
“With the right to vote under direct assault in states across the country, Senate Republicans have once again used the filibuster to block urgently needed legislation that not only protects voting rights, but also our very democracy. Congress cannot just sit back and do nothing as Jim Crow-style voter suppression returns with a vengeance, partisan and racist gerrymandering robs voters of their right to choose their representatives rather than the other way around, and Republican-led legislatures chip away at the bedrock of our democracy.
“As Americans, we should all be able to agree that everyone in this country has the right to have their voice heard and their vote counted — no matter their race, income, ZIP code, or anything else. We applaud Senate Democrats who voted for urgently needed solutions to an unprecedented attack on voting rights. But the next step is clear: The Senate must reform, if not end, the archaic filibuster, and pass federal legislation to protect voting rights. It is the only way forward — and inaction is simply not an option."
Together with the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, the Freedom to Vote Act would strengthen access to the ballot by expanding automatic and same-day voting registration, early voting, and vote by mail. It would also end partisan gerrymandering, establish Election Day as a national holiday, and limit election subversion from foreign interference, dark money, and partisan actors while promoting digital ad transparency.