The NAACP called on senators this week to push through two big pieces of legislation that would have a substantial effect on voting rights, especially for voters of color.
NAACP President Derrick Johnson issued an open letter Tuesday, calling on senators to pass two bills championed by President Joe Biden — the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act — which would address glaring weak points on ballot box access, voting protections and voter discrimination.
“Many young Americans will have fewer rights at the ballot box by age 18 ― if any ― than they would have had in the year they were born,” Johnson said. “This is not an issue of bipartisanship; it is not a time to play a repugnant game with our politics. This is about the future of America.”
Although both bills passed the House and are supported by the Senate, there’s no clear path to 60 votes to sever a filibuster in the 50-50 Senate, according to NBC News. They were set to begin debating the bills on Tuesday.
Voting will take place on Tuesday and continue throughout the week with Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) handling deliberations until the final vote.
Furthermore, Johnson addressed both Democratic and Republican senators by saying the current issues “have nothing to do with the D or the R after your name” but rather “everything to do with being an American that We The People elected to office.”
The Detroit native ended the letter by telling senators that by exercising their voting privilege, “you will decide who defines America, and who has a voice in America.”