Environmental Community Letter to Support HR 1

January 16, 2019

Dear Member of Congress,

On behalf of our millions of members and supporters, we write to you today to endorse the For the People Act (H.R. 1). Our nation cannot function to its fullest potential without a healthy and thriving democracy and the For the People Act proposes common sense reforms that will move us closer to the goal of making sure the right to vote in our elections  is protected, that all votes are counted, and that the undue influence of dark money from corporate and polluter interests in our elections is reined in.

Right now, our democracy is under duress. Big money campaign donors – not everyday constituents – are  getting the most attention from some of our most senior  elected leaders. Meanwhile, many of the most vulnerable communities in our country living with dangerous air, water and toxic pollution or with the catastrophic effects of climate change have less of a voice in our democracy.  The powerful are crowding out the people. That is wrong. It’s not what we, as Americans, deserve from our national government.

That’s especially dangerous because the same big polluter  interests that have so much influence in our government are the same corporate polluters our members, supporters, and volunteers fight every day in order to protect our air, our water, and our communities. For example, it is no surprise that instead of moving forward on comprehensive climate action to deal with the dire and growing impacts from rising seas, raging wildfires, widening drought and dangerous storms, we continue to be faced with denial and inaction.

The time has come for bold, ambitious reforms such as those proposed in the For The People Act (H.R. 1) introduced by Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Task Force Chair Rep. John Sarbanes. Moving this comprehensive package of reforms should, as intended, be the first order of business and will be an important step towards a reality where the communities living with dirty water, toxic air, or on the edge of climate disasters have a voice that will be heard and acted upon.

The For the People Act will include reforms essential to fixing our political system, including creating nationwide automatic and same-day voter registration, moving to restore the Voting Rights Act, curbing the influence of money in politics, putting an end to partisan gerrymandering, and strengthening government ethics reforms.

The American people know that Washington has not been representing their best interests. But there is new leadership that wants to change that. Now is the time to fix our unfair and inequitable political system. Now is the time to strengthen our democracy so it serves all the people, not just the wealthy and politically-connected. We call on Congress to support and quickly approve this common sense and essential package of reforms as soon as possible.

Region/State: