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Press release
Posted on 06/07/21

Over 100 Organizations Send Letter Calling on Senate Majority Leader Schumer to Eliminate the Filibuster 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 3, 2021

CONTACT

press@fixoursenate.org

 

Over 100 Organizations Send Letter Calling on Senate Majority Leader Schumer to Eliminate the Filibuster 

“We have moved past hypotheticals and entered a perilous new moment for our democracy.”

Read new letter here

 

Washington, DC — Stating “[w]e cannot allow the filibuster to stand in the way of progress or imperil the health of our democracy,” more than 100 organizations representing millions of Americans today sent in a letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), calling on Senate Democrats to eliminate the filibuster.

Key excerpts from the letter include:

“We have moved past hypotheticals and entered a perilous new moment for our democracy. Senate Republicans’ decision to block legislation establishing a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection is a shameful abdication of their duties to our county. 

… That Republicans could not even support a bipartisan investigation into a deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol reflects dangerously misplaced priorities: they have chosen party over country, obstruction over progress, and Trump over democracy. In the face of Republicans’ inability and unwillingness to defend our democracy, it is clearer than ever that the filibuster needs to be eliminated.

…Meanwhile, we are witnessing the “greatest contraction of voting rights since the end of Reconstruction and the beginning of Jim Crow,” as Republican legislatures across America attack voting rights and play partisan games with their election laws. Passing S.1, the For the People Act, is essential in light of these attacks on Americans’ fundamental voting and civil rights 

…  We cannot allow the filibuster to stand in the way of progress or imperil the health of our democracy … We call on you and the Senate Democratic caucus to eliminate the filibuster as a weapon that Sen, McConnell can use to block efforts to defend and strengthen our democracy and make our government work for the American people.”

Below is the full text of the letter, followed by the signers:

 

Majority Leader Schumer, 

 

Thank you for your strong leadership and continued dedication to making progress on essential priorities for the American people and for our democracy in the face of partisan obstruction.

We have moved past hypotheticals and entered a perilous new moment for our democracy. Senate Republicans’ decision to block legislation establishing a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection is a shameful abdication of their duties to our country. As Senator Joe Manchin said, “So disheartening. It makes you really concerned about our country.” That Republicans could not even support a bipartisan investigation into a deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol reflects dangerously misplaced priorities: they have chosen party over country, obstruction over progress, and Trump over democracy. 

In the face of Republicans’ inability and unwillingness to defend our democracy, it is clearer than ever that the filibuster needs to be eliminated. As Senator Brian Schatz stated, “filibustering a bipartisan Commission regarding the January 6 insurrection is a three dimensional way to make the point that the filibuster is primarily a destructive force in American politics.”

Meanwhile, we are witnessing the “greatest contraction of voting rights since the end of Reconstruction and the beginning of Jim Crow,” as Republican legislatures across America attack voting rights and play partisan games with their election laws. 

Passing S.1, the For the People Act, is essential in light of these attacks on Americans’ fundamental voting and civil rights. Yet Senate Minority Leader McConnell has called blocking the For the People Act his “top priority” and is committed to using the filibuster as a weapon to keep our democracy rigged. 

We cannot allow the filibuster to stand in the way of progress or imperil the health of our democracy. As columnist E.J. Dionne noted, “No amount of cajoling, compromising, begging, pleading or standing-on-your-head-and-holding-your-breath will change this … you can defend voting rights or you can defend the filibuster. You can’t do both.”

Investigating an insurrection and protecting voting rights should not be controversial or partisan – and they should not be issues that a minority of senators are allowed to block. 

We call on you and the Senate Democratic caucus to eliminate the filibuster as a weapon that Sen. McConnell can use to block efforts to defend and strengthen our democracy and make our government work for the American people.

Signed,

List here

 

About Fix Our Senate

 

Fix Our Senate is a campaign and coalition fighting for the broken Senate to be fixed so that the newly-elected government can get to work cleaning up President Trump’s messes and tackling the major challenges facing families, communities, and the country. Our highest priority is the elimination of the legislative filibuster, an outdated Senate rule that has been weaponized and abused by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to block overwhelmingly popular legislation supported by a majority of elected senators.

 Fix Our Senate coordinates work with allied organizations and advocates, serves as a resource for research and messaging guidance, communicates to key audiences directly and through the media, and uses any and all tools at our disposal to educate and persuade senators, candidates, and the public about the need for reform.

 

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