For Immediate Release
January 6, 2022
COLOR OF CHANGE: ONE YEAR AFTER CAPITOL RIOTS, PRESIDENT BIDEN AND SENATE DEMOCRATS STILL FAIL TO PROTECT ELECTIONS, BLACK VOTERS
Scott Roberts, Senior Director of Criminal Justice and Democracy Campaigns at Color Of Change, issued this statement after President Joe Biden’s speech on the anniversary of the January 6, 2021 riots on Capitol Hill:
“President Biden’s speech failed to address the issue at the heart of last year’s deadly Capitol riots: the nation’s utter disregard for the will of Black voters. On January 6, 2021, thousands of white supremacists and radical vigilantes led a coup in Washington to overturn the results of the 2020 election – an election where Black voters turned out in historic numbers to cast their ballots and shift the nation’s course. The violence at the Capitol set off a nationwide ripple effect where lawmakers in Republican-led states passed cruel voter suppression laws targeting the same Black voters and communities whose record-high turnout shaped the presidential race. But in spite of the glaring need for federal voting rights protections – particularly in Black communities – and demands from activists, community members, and organizations like ours, President Biden and his administration have given little more than lip service to the issue of voting rights. Today’s speech is no different.
“What happened on January 6 was an unprecedented threat to our democracy and an attack on all Americans. But one year later, we don’t need more presidential addresses on voting rights or speeches rehashing the events of January 6; we need action.
“There’s a five-alarm fire threatening our elections, but President Biden, as well as his Democratic colleagues in the Senate, has been standing in the wings, watching as Republicans strip away our voting rights bill-by-bill. We have the common-sense, tangible solutions we need – like HR1, HR4, and filibuster reform – that would protect Black voters and the integrity of our elections, but the President and Senate Democrats have yet to take them seriously. In fact, in his 40-minute speech, the President failed to mention federal voter protections or the Senate filibuster even once. Black voters turned out in unprecedented numbers to give Biden and Senate Democrats their seats; it’s past time that leaders in Washington enshrined our rights into law. President Biden and Senate Democrats must reform the Jim Crow filibuster and pass federal voting protections to fulfill their promises to Black voters and keep American democracy intact.”
Color Of Change is the nation’s largest online racial justice organization. We help people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by over 7 million members, we move decision-makers in corporations and governments to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people in America. Visit www.colorofchange.org