March On’s Statement on the Voting Rights Setback

For the past year, you have called, emailed, taken to the streets, and, many of you have even gotten arrested, to ensure that the most important cornerstone of our democracy – our freedom to vote – is protected.

In a disappointing turn of events last week, all 50 Republican Senators, and Democratic Senators Sinema and Manchin, shot down our efforts to pass the Freedom To Vote: John R Lewis Act. Even though the majority of Americans believe that voting is a fundamental right, these Senators voted against changing the rules to reform the filibuster that would have allowed the bill to pass with a simple majority. Despite voting to change filibuster rules in the past – including just last month – , these Senators chose to subvert our democracy instead. They are on the wrong side of history.

But let’s be clear: this is a setback, not a defeat.

It’s important to own, and feel a real sense of pride, in what we accomplished alongside so many of the organizations we work in coalition with. Many of our goals have been accomplished. We asked that President Bidern call on the Senate to make the passage of the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act our nation’s top priority, even if that means reforming the filibuster – and he did so. They said it wouldn’t happen. And then we did it. We swayed public opinion and the people in power in pushing the needle forward towards protecting our democracy – not only have voting rights risen to the top of President Biden’s agenda, but 48 Senators also voted to reform these rules.

These fights take time. They might’ve killed our bill for now, but they can never kill our movement. There is still so much work to be done to engage voters – especially new voters – and to fight anti-voter laws to protect and strengthen our democracy, and March On is committed to stepping up to the challenge.

Your dedication to the cause has gotten us to where we are now, and this force will only continue to propel us forward. We want to say thank you for everything you have brought to this fight, and want to reiterate that together, we will March On.