Received this e-mail today from former presidential candidate, Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D. TX), on behalf of his organization, Powered By People:
As President Joe Biden said Wednesday, “democracy has prevailed.”
Wednesday’s inauguration of President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, and the swearing in of Georgia Senators Raphael Warnock and John Ossoff, was proof that, though tested unlike any time in our lifetime, our democracy still holds and that “the people have been heard.”
But for how long?
I don’t need to tell you that we’re confronted by the greatest set of challenges known to any generation — vaccinating an entire country before hundreds of thousands more Americans die; creating good jobs that get people back to work and purpose in their lives; confronting climate change before it’s too late — these are the kind of threats that will take a nation working in concert to overcome.
And yet, at the moment we need a robust response from a government “of the people”, our democracy is on the ropes. It’s not just the attempted coup on January 6th, or the seditionist work from inside the Capitol led by Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley. It’s decades of big money and corporate influence corroding the connections between people and their representatives. And it’s more than a century of voter suppression that has targeted communities of color in an effort to restrict the franchise and consolidate power.
You are receiving this email because you’re part of Powered by People, a grassroots effort to strengthen and expand our democracy. We work to register voters and to ensure those voters know their rights and vote free of intimidation or suppression. We communicate with voters both in and out of election cycles, building trust, confidence and democratic infrastructure in the most voter suppressed state in the country. And we organize and empower volunteers, by the thousands, to do this work.
I can’t think of a more important moment for us to be so fully engaged in the fight. Because, while it’s wonderful that Trump is gone and Joe Biden is now our President, new leadership in the White House is not going to be enough.
We won’t overcome the challenges we face if we aren’t pushing every day to, as Governor Ann Richards said, “let the people in.” The enemies of democracy aren’t taking a break, neither can we. No rest for the weary, no respite for those in the fight.
That’s how we’ll save our democracy AND build lasting Democratic majorities than can see through the most important and the most ambitious national agenda America has ever had.
This year we will build on the work of the more than 20,000 volunteers who joined our efforts in 2020, work that resulted in the registration of more than 200,000 new Texas voters ahead of the November election and one of the highest levels of voter turnout in Texas history.
We will work county by county to remove barriers to voting and improve the ability of our fellow Texans to register and to be counted in our elections. And we will continue the effort of transforming the most voter suppressed state in the union to one that can be an example of what true democracy looks like.
Thanks for being in this fight with us.