National Groups Send Open Letter to Board Members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Businesses must stand up for voting rights, endorse Freedom to Vote Act, before it’s too late
Washington DC, November 18th, 2021- 23 groups sent an open letter to the U.S. Chamber’s Board Members asking them to use their influence to support fair elections and people’s freedom to vote.
A majority of Americans across the political spectrum support the Freedom to Vote Act. The reforms in the Freedom to Vote Act will get big money out of politics, restore voting rights, offer new protections for voters, end gerrymandering so that electoral districts are fairly drawn, and hold government officials accountable with new ethics standards. This will help return power to the people.
Unfortunately, the U.S. Chamber has yet to stand up for Americans’ freedom to vote. Instead, the Chamber advised members of the House and Senate to vote against the earlier For The People Act, mischaracterizing the provisions in the bill.
The letter asked the Board members to influence the Chamber to reconsider its position. It makes the following asks:
- Join the many business leaders, corporations, and investors that have publicly endorsed the Freedom to Vote Act.
- Communicate your support to Members of Congress
- Change the U.S. Chamber’s position to support the Freedom to Vote Act.
Jana Morgan, director of the Declaration for American Democracy coalition—a group of 240+ organizations representing tens of millions of Americans nationwide, said:
“The Freedom to Vote Act is the most significant voting rights bill in generations and it reflects our shared values as Americans. It’s also good for business. A fully functioning, inclusive democracy is critical to the health of our nation and our economy. Business leaders need to take a stand and call on the Senate and President Biden to deliver the Freedom to Vote Act to the American People.”
Aaditi Lele, Student Fellow, Change the Chamber, said:
“At Change the Chamber, voices like mine represent many thousands of young people across the country. We are invested in seeing companies advocate for real governmental policy change on climate issues at the national level. Without action on voting rights and democracy reform, the changes we hope to see for environmental justice are immeasurably more difficult. We stand with this letter, urging companies, their CEOs, and their trade associations to not sit idly by and take leadership on this issue. Standing for democracy is good for business, and it’s good for our future.”
Thomas Oppel, Executive Vice President of ASBC, said:
“Every study shows voter fraud is rare, but one-third to one-half of eligible voters don’t participate. The American Sustainable Business Council supports the Freedom to Vote Act because it addresses this real problem by making it easier for eligible citizens to vote and countering efforts to limit ballot access. The U.S. Chamber and its member businesses cannot honestly claim to support the democratic institutions necessary for truly free markets while opposing efforts to protect against clear attacks on those institutions.”
Rachel Curley, democracy advocate for Public Citizen’s Congress Watch division said:
“From the siege against our Capitol to the hundreds of voter suppression bills moving at the state level, our democracy is under attack. By not supporting reform, the Chamber is choosing to shield America’s largest corporations from accountability rather than stand up for the right of every American to vote. Without a flourishing democracy our communities and economy cannot thrive. It’s time for the business community to stand up for America’s best ideals and support the Freedom to Vote Act.”
Groups that signed on to the letter:
American Sustainable Business Council
Black Voters Matter
Blue Wave Postcard Movement
Build Back Better USA
Change the Chamber
Clean Elections Texas
Declaration for American Democracy
End Citizens United/Let America Vote Action Fund
Fix Democracy First
Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility
Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Action
Network for Responsible Public Policy
RepresentUs New Mexico
Secure Elections Network
U.S. Partnership for Education for Sustainable Development
Voices for Progress
Contact: Valentina Stackl, Greenpeace USA, firstname.lastname@example.org , (734) 276 6260