MA Groups Urge Voting Rights, Democracy Reform
Friday, January 7, 2022
Community groups have held vigils across Massachusetts this week to call for voting and democracy reform on the anniversary of the Jan. 6 Capitol attack following the 2020 election.
As the U.S. Department of Justice continues to investigate the riot, Congress is taking up voting-rights legislation. The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act passed the House, but is stalled in the Senate.
Senators have introduced a separate bill, the Freedom to Vote Act.
Debbie Paul, chairperson of the Massachusetts Indivisible Coalition, said voters want to see action.
"They need to do what we elected them to do, and to defend and protect the Constitution they took an oath to," Paul asserted. "And now is the time to do that, by passing both the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act."
A new UMASS Amherst national poll found a majority of Americans support measures like the ability to vote by mail and automatic voter registration.
Dhruba Sen, volunteer organizer of a rally in Framingham, said it is important for people to make sure their voices are heard, especially so violence doesn't become normalized in U.S. politics.
"Anytime there's any disagreement, the aggrieved parties will arm themselves and invade the local institutions of democracy in order to address their grievances," Sen worried. "So, I think it is extremely important to make sure that such an event doesn't happen."
Four people died during the Jan. 6 riot. So far, six of the more than 700 people who face federal charges in connection with the insurrection are from Massachusetts.
Susan Labandibar, co-coordinator for the Swing Blue Alliance, said it is important for people of all political views to come together in support of voting rights.
"The issue of our voting rights being abrogated, and the efforts to undermine the institutions that ensure that we have free and fair elections, this transcends party politics," Labandibar contended.
get more stories like this via email
One of North Carolina's oldest Historically Black Colleges and Universities is finding new ways to help students stay enrolled and graduate. Recent …
A new survey finds 8 in 10 Kentucky parents say afterschool programs could help their child combat social and mental-health struggles by reducing unpr…
A technology that once existed only in science fiction soon could emerge as a viable solution to climate change. The city of Flagstaff has added …
A new report found Texas likely undercounted the number of people who actually live in the state when gathering information for the 2020 census…
Minnesota has more than 10,000 brownfield sites, which are abandoned or idled properties in need of contamination removal. State officials will soon …
By age 35, workers with a bachelor's degree or higher are about twice as likely as workers with just a high school diploma to have a good job - one …
The mayor of Huntington, where more than 200 homes were recently damaged by severe flooding, said now is the state's "one chance" to prevent other …
Alzheimer's disease is one of the leading causes of death in North Dakota, prompting state officials to launch an online dashboard, where the public …