Washington, D.C. — Ahead of a speech today by President Biden uplifting the need for voter protections in response to numerous state legislatures pushing the Big Lie and voter suppression measures, Accountable.US called on corporations who boasted their commitments to voting rights, racial equity and diversity to get off the sidelines and live up to their stated values. The speech comes as the Texas legislature is convening in a special session advancing dangerous legislation based on right-wing extremism that would disenfranchise Black and brown voters.
“The anti-democratic push by Texas Republicans is the latest shoe to drop in a wide-scale voter suppression scheme carried out by desperate and dishonest embracers of the Big Lie,” said Kyle Herrig, president of Accountable.US. “Despite corporations’ empty promises to promote voter access, diversity and racial equity, they have done little to pressure Congress to act except pay lip service to their customers, shareholders and employees. Money talks, and as states actively attempt to suppress the freedom to vote, corporations need to pick a side and fight back against racist attacks on our democracy.”
In April, government watchdog Accountable.US released a report finding that corporations touting their pledges towards racial equity and diversity have doled out over $800,000 to state lawmakers who have led voter suppression efforts in Texas, Arizona, and Florida. Numerous firms — including Exelon, Raytheon, and Disney — have been largely silent on state efforts to disenfranchise predominantly Black and brown voters.
Texas Republicans’ latest attack on democracy comes less than one month after obstructionist senators lined up to do the bidding of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce by refusing to even debate the For the People Act — historic legislation to protect the right to vote. Last month, Accountable.US sent a letter urging the U.S. Chamber to come out against Texas’ SB7 given its stated opposition to ‘partisan’ voting rights bills. Yet unsurprisingly, the Chamber has remained silent on the nakedly partisan goals of SB7 after running its own lobbying effort to kill the For The People Act.
Accountable.US recently launched the “Drop the Chamber” campaign, which aims to pressure major corporations, including Microsoft, Target, and Salesforce, to back up their public statements supporting voting rights by severing their relationships with the U.S. Chamber over its well-documented history of supporting voting suppression and gerrymandering schemes. Accountable.US recently unveiled new TV and digital ads, including a national TV spot on CNN, calling on these corporations to demonstrate their stated values.
KEY REPORT FINDINGS:
- Texas’ Biggest Donors That Have Made Public Commitments To Racial Equity Have Given $493,000 To State Lawmakers Responsible For Voter Suppression.
- Arizona’s Top 5 Corporate Donors — All Of Which Tout Commitments To Diversity — Have Given Nearly $77,000 To Three Lawmakers With Troubling Histories On Race Who Authored Three Of The State’s Worst Suppression Bills.
- Florida State Legislators’ Top Donors With Alleged Commitments To Racial Equity Have Given $230,500 To Florida State Legislators Responsible For Advancing Voter Suppression Bills.
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