NETWORK and 3,500 Catholic Sisters Call for Immediate Action on Voting Rights

Sr. Quincy Howard, OP
January 13, 2022

Today, NETWORK Executive Director Mary J. Novak, Deputy Executive Director Joan F. Neal, Government Relations Advocate Minister Christian Watkins, and I sent an urgent letter to all members of the U.S. Senate calling on them to support the passage of H.R. 5746, the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act.

This message to the Senate follows the House’s 220 – 203 vote to send the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act to the Senate for urgent consideration. While Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is now able to circumvent the filibuster to hold debate on this legislation, as he wrote in a recent letter to Democratic Senators, “to ultimately end debate and pass the voting rights legislation, we will need 10 Republicans to join us—which we know from past experience will not happen—or we will need to change the Senate rules as has been done many times before.”

Quoting a previous letter signed by 3,500 Catholic Sisters, we urge all Senators to take the necessary steps to contend with the filibuster and pass the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act into law before it is too late. 

As the Sisters wrote in July 2021, “Minority opposition must not keep Congress from passing critical democracy reform any longer. Senate rules like the filibuster cannot be allowed to indefinitely prevent the passage of critical freedom to vote legislation that will protect our democracy.

We know that the possibility to create a more just society ultimately rests upon the health of our democracy and the freedom of all voters to cast their ballots and have them counted. We are staunch supporters the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and applaud recent efforts to force debate on these bills.

Now is the time to safeguard our democracy and protect every voter’s sacred right to vote.

Read the text of NETWORK’s letter here.