• Monday, March 27, 2023


Biden’s Selma visit to highlight voting rights, Black voters on anniversary of ‘Bloody Sunday’

By: Kimberly Rodrigues

President Joe Biden is visiting Alabama on Sunday (05) to advocate for stronger voting rights on the occasion of the 58th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” when peaceful protesters were beaten by state troopers while marching against discrimination.

The purpose of Biden’s trip to Selma is to emphasise his dedication to Black voters, who played a significant role in his election to the presidency and will continue to be a crucial constituency in his anticipated 2024 re-election bid.

Biden’s visit comes at a time when his attempts to enact voting rights legislation have stalled in Congress.

The president will deliver a speech at the Edmund Pettus Bridge, where state troopers attacked the 1965 voting rights marchers, including John Lewis, a Black civil rights activist who later became a US congressman.

The nation was stunned by the brutality captured in the coverage which played a part in catalysing the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

“President Biden will talk about the importance of commemorating Bloody Sunday so that history cannot be erased,” White House spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre told the media on Friday.

“He will highlight how the continued fight for voting rights is … integral to delivering economic justice and civil rights for Black Americans.”

Biden advocates for the Freedom to Vote Act and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to register new voters, make Election Day a holiday, and strengthen US Justice Department oversight of local election jurisdictions with a history of discrimination.

Additionally, to gain support from African American voters, Biden spoke at Martin Luther King Jr.’s Atlanta church in January.

Last month, the Democratic National Committee made South Carolina the first state to hold the presidential nominating contest due to its high percentage of Black voters, displacing Iowa.

With inputs from Reuters


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