It is clear that our most sacred rights and freedoms are at risk. A vocal minority that does not reflect the will of the people ties our hands behind our backs. This vocal minority is working to roll back two of our most fundamental freedoms – freedom of choice and reproductive freedom. This endangers nothing less than our democracy itself.
Across the country, extremist politicians are working harder than ever to undermine our right to vote in their never-ending quest for political gain. We already know that they will resort to any lowly maneuver – from spreading dangerous disinformation to attack on our country and our Capitol – to prevail. Last year the legislature in 19 states passed 33 laws Limiting our freedom to make our voices heard and reflect our voices, and more are likely to come when lawmakers reconvene in 2022.
Our democracy is in crisis and there is no time to waste taking action. The Senate must find a way forward to pass the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act, which would protect access to the ballot box, end black money, stop partisan manipulation, and protect our elections from partisan sabotage. It would stand up to all of these government attacks and ensure that every American can vote in safe, accessible, and transparent elections. Not passing this law is not an option; the price of inaction is just too high.
From where I sit — at the helm of an organization that has campaigned for access to abortion in the United States for more than 50 years — it’s clear that the same state legislatures attacking the right to vote are enforcing increasingly extreme bans and restrictions over Abortion Rights and Access.
The anti-choice movement and those working to erect barriers to the ballot box are one and the same, united around white supremacy. These bad actors know these two issues are linked—and so do we.
We cannot achieve a world in which each of us has true reproductive freedom unless we also secure our freedom of choice. Protecting the right to vote is not just a moral imperative; There is an absolute need to elect champions at all levels to block attacks on reproductive freedom and expand access to abortion care. We know that eight out of ten Americans– the vast majority of people in this country – support the legal right to abortion. But we cannot elect leaders who represent our values without ensuring that Americans can vote safely and freely.