Martin Luther King Jr.’s Family Told the Senate to Pass the Voting Rights Legislation right now.

·3 min read
Yolanda Renee King (C), Arndrea Waters King (R) and Martin Luther King III lead the annual D.C. Peace Walk: Change Happens with Good Hope and a Dream across the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge for Dr. Martin Luther King Day on January 17, 2022 in Washington, DC.
Yolanda Renee King (C), Arndrea Waters King (R) and Martin Luther King III lead the annual D.C. Peace Walk: Change Happens with Good Hope and a Dream across the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge for Dr. Martin Luther King Day on January 17, 2022 in Washington, DC.

On MLK Day, the slain civil rights leader’s kin called out the senate to pass voting rights legislation.

According to Insider, King’s family led a march while holding a banner that read, “Deliver Voting Rights.” Meanwhile, marchers came from all across the country to Washington, DC to participate in the DC Peace Walk across the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge. King Jr.’s family included: his son, Martin Luther King III, 13-year-old granddaughter Yolanda Renee King, and daughter-in-law Arndrea Waters King.

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From NBC News:

Their mass mobilization, Deliver for Voting Rights, is part of an ongoing campaign to expand voting rights legislation and restore full power of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Although a seminal achievement of the movement, and part of King’s legacy, the Shelby County v. Holder decision by the Supreme Court in 2013 stripped key provisions of the law. Then in 2021, the high court’s ruling on Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee further gutted the legislation.

Last year alone, state legislatures across the country introduced some 440 voter suppression bills in 49 states. At least 19 states, including Georgia and Texas, have enacted voter ID requirements and other laws that critics say restrict access to the ballot, while supporters have described them as voter integrity measures.

The mobilization began in Phoenix on Saturday, on what would have been the slain leader’s 93rd birthday. There, members of the King family will march and rally for voting rights, in tandem with the Arizona Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Committee and other allies.

This is not something that just started now, King Jr.’s descendants carrying the torch that was lit with the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Martin Luther King III, the eldest son of the civil rights leader, gave a speech to the hundreds of attendees, according to CBS News, “last week, the President said he’s tired of being quiet about voting rights. Well, we’re tired of being patient.”

Both President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris gave addresses imploring for the passage of voting rights bills, according to Insider.

King also called out Democratic senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia, who both said that they would go against effort from the Democrats to end the Senate filibuster. They think that taking away the tool that allows a minority party to block a vote on unfavorable legislation will only increase partisanship.

But those that oppose them, like King III, say they are hindering the passage of the important legislation that will protect voting rights.

Don’t they want people to vote?!

More from NBC News:

For more than a year, Congress has considered federal voting rights legislation. While Democrats in the House have passed measures mostly along partisan lines, to date, Senate action has stalled. Democrats accuse GOP senators of using the filibuster to block debate on three separate voting rights bills. They include the For the People Act in June 2021; the Freedom to Vote Act in October 2021; and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act in November 2021.

This week, the House passed the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act. The legislation now heads to the Senate, where its fate is uncertain.

While the chamber adjourned on Thursday because of Covid-19 concerns and a winter storm threat to the D.C. region this weekend, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed on the Senate floor that a planned recess would be postponed so the Senate could vote on voting rights.