The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Phone: (202) 588-1000

Groups Speak at the White House, Tell President Obama: With Deadlines for Voter Registration Running Out and the Presidential Election Looming, It Is Time to Move on Democracy Issues

Press Conference Wednesday: Secret Money in Politics and Attacks on Voting Rights Protections Must Be Addressed


WHAT: As time runs out for eligible Americans to register to vote on Election Day, a coalition of national groups and organizations will gather in front of the White House to support the Obama administration in fulfilling its commitments and promises to American democracy. The groups will hold a press conference to demonstrate the urgency for Congress to act expeditiously in support of the administration's commitment to fulfill the promise to protect our democracy. They will urge all Americans to voice their support for the administration to take action to curb the influence of money in politics and to insist that Congress act now to ensure equal access to the ballot box for all eligible Americans. Speakers will call for the president to issue an executive order requiring disclosure of political spending. They will also urge him to reaffirm his call for Congress to make the legislative changes necessary to repair and strengthen the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and restore the protections against voting discrimination that were struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court in Shelby County v. Holder. Their message: Act now.

Coinciding with the press conference is a national call-in action day. Allies of 20 groups (see list below) will flood the White House with calls urging quick action by the president to issue an executive order requiring disclosure of secret money in politics.

WHEN: 10 a.m. EDT Wednesday, June 8

WHERE: 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, between Lafayette Park and the White House

WHO: Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen (moderator)
Chris Shelton, president, Communications Workers of America
Hilary Shelton, Washington bureau director and senior vice president for advocacy, NAACP
Michele Jawando, vice president, Center for American Progress action fund
Michael Petro, executive vice president, Committee for Economic Development
Debbie Sease, senior lobbying and advocacy director, Sierra Club
Bryan McGannon, director of policy and engagement, American Sustainable Business Council
Laura Peralta-Schulte, senior government relations advocate, NETWORK
Scott Swenson, vice president for communications, Common Cause
Erich Pica, president, Friends of the Earth

Groups organizing the national call-in day include American Family Voices, Avaaz, Campaign for America's Future, Center for Biological Diversity,, Common Cause, Communications Workers of America, Corporate Accountability International, Courage Campaign, Daily Kos, Democracy For America, Every Voice, Food & Water Watch, Franciscan Action Network, Free Speech for People, Friends of the Earth, NETWORK, People For the American Way, Public Citizen, Sierra Club, StampStampede and U.S. PIRG.

Public Citizen is a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization that champions the public interest in the halls of power. We defend democracy, resist corporate power and work to ensure that government works for the people - not for big corporations. Founded in 1971, we now have 500,000 members and supporters throughout the country.

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