NPNA Observes One-Year Anniversary of the Tragic Jan. 6 Attack on Capitol, Urges Congress to Pass Voting Rights Legislation
WASHINGTON – Today marks one year since the tragic Jan. 6 attack on our nation’s capital and the deadly attempt to overturn the will of the American people. The National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA), a multi-ethnic coalition of the nation’s largest state-level immigrant advocacy organizations, urges Congress to protect the fundamental right to vote by passing the Freedom to Vote Act and the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Furthermore, the Biden administration should facilitate voting on behalf of new citizens by implementing automatic voter registration at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services following naturalization ceremonies.
“A year ago, anti-democracy rioters tried to undermine the electoral results achieved by a record-level turnout of voters of color, newly naturalized citizens, and others. These threats to democracy continue, as states across the nation have passed legislation restricting the fundamental right to vote,” said Nicole Melaku, NPNA executive director. “Congress cannot stand idle amidst these attacks against current and prospective voters. Hundreds of thousands of these voters are newly naturalized citizens who NPNA helped naturalize and now have the right to vote. The Senate must pass the Freedom to Vote Act and the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, even if that means eliminating the filibuster.”
In 2021, 19 states enacted 34 laws that make mail and early voting more difficult, introduce harsher voter ID requirements, and will likely cause faulty voter purges, among other ways to make it more difficult for people to vote. Moreover, Senate Republicans have blocked voting rights legislation. Therefore, NPNA members across the country will be more committed than ever to educating voters, getting them to the polls, and working across stakeholder groups to ensure the sacred right to vote is protected for immigrant and nonimmigrant voters alike.
“In Arizona, we endured a disturbing illegitimate partisan review of our election results in Maricopa County, designed to set the stage for future efforts to suppress votes and subvert the will of Arizonans,” said Petra Falcon, Promise Arizona executive director. “Congress has the responsibility to protect the voting rights of newly naturalized citizens, the growing Latino electorate, and Arizona’s native Americans, who are targeted by laws introduced with drummed up false rhetoric around voter fraud. Congress can and must act.”
“Amid the pandemic and cold winter in Wisconsin, Voces de la Frontera organized our members to create a network of over 20,000 Latinx, multiracial youth, and naturalized citizen voters to participate in the 2020 elections and have their voices heard at the ballot box,” said Christine Neumann-Ortiz, Executive Director of Voces de la Frontera. “The far-right extremists’ failed coup on Jan. 6 was an effort to undermine the will of the voters in Wisconsin and across this country. The aftermath included sweeping legislative efforts to undermine voting rights, a brazen assault on our democracy. These aggressive attacks on voting and civil rights are a clear call for everyone who believes in democracy to stand united in pushing Congress to end the filibuster, pass a pathway to citizenship for millions of immigrant essential workers, and pass the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.”