The Filibuster Must Go

January 7, 2022

Our democracy is at risk.

The Roosevelt Rundown features our top stories of the week.

To Protect Our Democracy and Economy, Protect Voting Rights

One year after the violent attack on the US Capitol, our democracy is still under assault. 

For the last 12 months, lies about the 2020 election results have fueled an antidemocratic movement—with states across the country weakening voting rights and making it easier to overturn elections. 

And for the last 12 months, the filibuster has prevented action.

At long last, that might be changing. This week, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) announced that if the filibuster continues to block voting rights legislation, the Senate will vote later this month to change Senate rules. That could mean either shifting to a “talking filibuster” or carving out voting rights as a simple-majority issue (as has been done for debt ceiling votes).

Such moves would create paths to passage for the Freedom to Vote Act and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act—crucial pieces of legislation that would, among other things, ensure early and mail-in voting and combat individual states’ recent attacks on voting rights.

“Protecting the freedom of all Americans to vote is critical to the promise of multiracial democracy,” Roosevelt’s Kyle Strickland tweeted

And it’s essential to a functioning, fair, and equitable economy—one that works for the people.


Jobs Day Takeaways

While the unemployment rate fell from 4.2 to 3.9 percent in December, there’s more to the story.

“The labor market is improving! Average hourly earnings increased by 19 cents to $31.31, and employment gains in October and November were 141,000 higher than previously reported,” Roosevelt’s Alí Bustamante tweeted.

But “the recovery remains unequal. The Black unemployment rate is still higher than pre-pandemic levels and grew to 7.1% in December. And Black women’s unemployment grew to 6.2% from 4.9%. We need to directly address discriminatory labor practices.” 

Read on for more labor analysis from Bustamante.


Reimagining Workforce Training

In a new series of issue briefs, “Reimagining Workforce Development: Building Worker Power through Workforce Training Programs,” Roosevelt experts provide recommendations for reshaping workforce training programs—all with the priority of expanding worker power and reducing racial and gender inequities in the labor market. Read on.

What We’re Reading

Why President Biden Is Suddenly Talking about Meat [feat. Roosevelt’s Mike Konczal]Washington Post

Rollups: There’s a Hospital Bed MonopolyThe American Prospect

Student-Loan Burdens Upend the American Homeownership Dream – Bloomberg

More than 40 Percent of Americans Live in Counties Hit by Climate Disasters in 2021Washington Post

The Insurrection’s Economic Legacy Is “Intertwined” with the PandemicMarketplace