Activists Protest the Filibuster at Chuck Schumer’s Home

Kim Miller is filled with emotion as she recalls losing both her favorite uncle and a good friend to gun violence.
Donna Aceto

Hundreds of people made their way to Brooklyn on May 8 to stage a 24-hour “Filibuster to End the Filibuster” demonstration outside of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s home.

Beginning at noon on May 7, attendees sang, delivered speeches, wrote postcards, read the constitution, and more throughout an overnight event at 9 Prospect Park West. The demonstration sought to bring attention to the effort to end the filibuster, which prevents many pieces of legislation from clearing the Senate with a simple majority. Instead, 60 votes are often required to overcome the filibuster.

Activists also set up a cardboard cutout of senators including Schumer as well as out bisexual Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Sinema and Manchin have defended the filibuster.

A cardboard cuitout of Senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Chuck Schumer of New York.Donna Aceto

Among the bills held up in part by the filibuster include the Equality Act, which would add to last June’s Supreme Court ruling in the Bostock case and solidify comprehensive non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ individuals. But that is not the only hurdle: Manchin has yet to express support for the Equality Act.

The groups participating in the event included Rise and Resist, Gays Against Guns, Equality New York, Common Cause New York, Disabled in Action, Youth for BIPOC Solidarity, Grannies for Peace, Climate Kids Club, and Resistance Revival Chorus. Empire State Indivisible, Sunset Movement NYC, Housing Works, Extinction Rebellion, and activist and actress Ilana Glazer also joined.

Robert Croonquist of Rise and Resist makes introductions.Donna Aceto
The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons filibusters for Peace and safety.Donna Aceto
Tricia Cooke of Gays Against Guns reads names of those lost to gun violenceDonna Aceto
Jay W. Walker reads from the Brennan Center for Justice’s report on Confronting Explicit Racism in Law Enforcement.Donna Aceto
Postcards and other materials for the overnight filibuster demonstration.Donna Aceto

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