President BidenJoe BidenBiden urges Congress to pass legislation on the anniversary of John Lewis’ dead Afghan, Taliban officials meet in Qatar amid withdrawal of US troops Biden administration investigates case of ‘Havana syndrome’ in Austria MORE on Saturday, Congress called for the adoption of two pieces of voting legislation on the one-year anniversary of Rep. John LewisJohn LewisBiden urges Congress to pass suffrage legislation on anniversary of John Lewis’ death Congress can honor legacy of John Lewis with protection of suffrage Kings initiates voting rights effort to honor John Lewis MORE(D-Ga.) Dead.
In a statement released by the White House Saturday night commemorating Lewis’ death, Biden reflected on the days just before the longtime congressman and Civil Rights icon died in July 2020.
The president said Lewis maintained dignity and grace before death from stage IV cancer.
“Instead of answering our concerns for him, he asked us to stay focused on the unfinished work – his life’s work – to heal and unite this nation,” Biden said.
Biden added that during his first six months in office, he has thought back to that time with Lewis. The commander-in-chief said that while the United States has made progress in penetrating the pandemic, there was still much to be done to ensure progress in health care, criminal justice and the economy.
“Perhaps most of all, it means continuing the cause that John was willing to give his life for: protecting the sacred right to vote,” Biden said. “Not since the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s have we seen such tireless attacks on the right to vote and integrity in our elections – from the big lie to the uprising on January 6 to the new waves of voter oppression and a new front of election undermining . “
“I urge Congress again to pass the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act so that I can sign them into law,” Biden concluded, referring to a piece of suffrage legislation named after Lewis.
On Tuesday, Biden issued similar remarks regarding Lewis and the federal election law.
“Last month, Republicans were against even debates, even considering the For For People Act. The Senate Democrats stood united to protect our democracy and the sanctity of the vote. We have to pass the For the People Act, it is a national imperative, ”Biden said.
The president’s message comes amid a push from the Biden administration and Democrats to promote voting rights and warn against past President TrumpDonald Trump Former Surgeon General says CDC guidance on masks “premature” and “wrong” Biden urges Congress to pass voting legislation on the anniversary of John Lewis’ death Cuba, Haiti poses major challenges for Florida Democrats MORE‘s unsubstantiated allegations that the 2020 presidential election was “rigged” and tainted by widespread voter fraud.
A number of GOP-led lawmakers have proposed or passed electoral legislation that will tighten electoral restrictions, including on ballot boxes, mail-in voting and voter ID requirements.
These bills have popped up in states like Florida, Arizona, Georgia and Texas.
This week, Texas Democrats fled their state to Washington to prevent a new election law from being passed. Lone Star State lawmakers also met with Vice President Harris, the Senate Majority Leader Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerBiden urges Congress to pass suffrage legislation on the anniversary of John Lewis’ death. Where is ‘President Andrew Shepherd’ when we need him? Technical executives increased political donations amid lobbying push MORE (DN.Y.) and Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinBiden urges Congress to pass voting legislation on the anniversary of John Lewis ‘death Biden’s silence over filibuster tribes Democrats’ patience Three Texas Democrats fleeing the state to DC tested positive for COVID-19 MORE to discuss the right to vote while in the country’s capital.
The call from Biden also comes as both parts of the legislation on voting rights he mentioned have stalled in Congress. In particular, the law for the people was blocked by a GOP filibuster in the Senate late last month. Both bills have very little Republican support.
Other lawmakers, including Lewis, succeed Rep. Nikema Williams (D-Ga.) Celebrated Lewis on Saturday.