Rep. Joyce Beatty
(D-Ohio) was detained by US Capitol Police
on Thursday while protesting for voting rights with other Black women
outside a Senate office building in Washington
Beatty, the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, tweeted a photo of herself being zip-tied by police, with the caption, "Let the people vote. Fight for justice."
According to police, nine people were arrested Thursday for "illegal demonstration" in a "prohibited area" of the Capitol, with two men and seven women being brought in for processing.
Allow the people to vote, and fight for justice. pic.twitter.com/JnEUPl9KJW — Joyce Beatty (@RepBeatty) July 15, 2021
“I stand in solidarity with Black women and allies across the country in defense of our constitutional right to vote,” Beatty said in a statement
following her arrest, adding that she had been “leading a peaceful demonstration.” “We have come too far and fought too hard to see everything systematically dismantled and restricted by those who wish to silence us. Be assured that this is only the beginning,” she added.
On Thursday, Beatty joined a group of civil rights
activists, primarily Black women, on Capitol Hill
for a "Call to Action Day" to condemn voter restriction legislation being pushed by Republican-led state legislatures and to urge the Senate to pass federal voting rights bills.
Beatty spoke at a rally prior to marching to the Hart Senate Office Building, calling for the passage of two key voting rights bills: the For The People Act
and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act
“We will continue to come and stand up to protect our voting rights,” she said at the rally, adding that “here we are, 56 years after the Voting Rights Act of 1965, still under attack
in state legislatures across the country are introducing hundreds of bills to limit voting rights, with some already becoming law
, and Arizona
disenfranchise Black, Latino
, and low-income voters
The For the People Act would override
much of the Republican Party
's state-level efforts by mandating that states
implement measures such as early voting
, no-excuse absentee ballots, and automatic and same-day voter registration.
However, the bill will be difficult to pass because Democrats have a slim Senate majority, Republicans have consistently opposed it, and key Senate Democrats
have refused to support filibuster reform
Following her arrest, Beatty tweeted with the hashtag #GoodTrouble, a reference to the late civil rights advocate Sen. John Lewis (D-Ga.), who famously urged people to get into "good trouble" by protesting.
We will not be turned back. We will continue walking. We will fight for freedom and our right to vote! pic.twitter.com/uyJHXEy8Y0 — Joyce Beatty (@RepBeatty) July 15, 2021