Statement from When We All Vote Executive Director on Senate Blocking Voting Rights


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Contact: [email protected] 

(WASHINGTON, DC): Today, Stephanie L. Young, Executive Director of When We All Vote, a leading voting organization committed to increasing participation in every election, released a statement following the vote in the Senate blocking the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.

“Today, the Senate blocked the opportunity to begin debate on the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, confirming that our elected officials continue to choose politics over the people, and that the filibuster is an undemocratic tool that allows a minority of Republican Senators to make decisions for the majority of us. The filibuster, at its core, is rooted in racism. It has been used to protect white supremacy all throughout our history, and today’s vote is no different as voter suppression targets those who have historically been left out of the political process,” said Young.

“For decades, elected officials across the aisle have supported the Voting Rights Act. Four Republican presidents all signed extensions and amendments to this pivotal law after they passed with bipartisan support. When President Bush signed the last extension of the law in 2006, it passed 98 to 0.” 

“But today, a year after record voter turnout, Senators are making our sacred right to vote a partisan issue, dangerously spreading disinformation and lies that are crippling our democracy and making it harder for people of color, working class and young people and people with disabilities to make their voices heard in each and every election. Our democracy must work for all of us, not some of us. And that means we need our elected officials to step up and reform or eliminate the filibuster now. Our democracy can’t wait.”


The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act would ensure that any changes to voting rules that could discriminate against voters based on their race or background are federally reviewed, so everyone has an equal say in the future of this country and the decisions that impact their everyday lives. More than 15,000 people and 90 businesses have taken action with When We All Vote calling on Congress to pass federal voting rights legislation. Learn more and get involved in When We All Vote’s advocacy efforts at whenweallvote.org/advocacy.

ABOUT When We All Vote: 

When We All Vote is a leading national, nonpartisan initiative is on a mission to change the culture around voting and to increase participation in each and every election by helping to close the race and age gap. Created by Michelle Obama, When We All Vote brings together individuals, institutions, brands, and organizations to register new voters across the country and advance civic education for the entire family and voters of every age to build an informed and engaged electorate for today and generations to come. We empower our supporters and volunteers to take action through voting, advocating for their rights, and holding their elected officials accountable. 

In 2020, When We All Vote ran a robust, multifaceted campaign and reached more than 100 million people to educate them about the voting process and get them registered and ready to vote. The initiative also led in voter education, registration, and volunteer engagement and as a result, 512,000 people started or completed the voter registration process, and nearly 500 media, corporate, and nonprofit partners joined its efforts.

Michelle Obama launched When We All Vote in 2018 and is joined by fellow Co-Chairs Tom Hanks, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Janelle Monáe, Chris Paul, Faith Hill, Selena Gomez, Liza Koshy, Megan Rapinoe, Shonda Rhimes, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kerry Washington, and Rita Wilson.

When We All Vote is a key initiative within Civic Nation, a 501(c)(3) organization, and works with Civic Nation Action, a 501(c)(4). These organizations are homes for changemakers who inspire, educate, and activate people around the issues that will define this generation. 

ABOUT Civic Nation:

Civic Nation is a nonpartisan, nonprofit home for changemakers who inspire, educate, and activate people around the issues that will define this generation. Civic Nation empowers and educates individuals, companies, institutions and organizations to drive culture, systems, and policy change, working towards a more inclusive and equitable America. Seven initiatives are a part of the Civic Nation family: When We All Vote, United State of Women, ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge, End Rape On Campus, It’s On Us, Made to Save and We The Action. Learn more here.