ADVOCACY GROUPS, PROTESTERS JOIN “WE OBJECT” UNITED FOR DEMOCRACY RALLY TO CALL ON CONGRESS TO FIX BROKEN SUPREME COURT
Groups gathered on the first day of the Court’s new term with decisions on criminal justice, disability rights, gun safety, and protections for student borrowers and homeowners slated to affect millions of Americans
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Earlier today, United for Democracy – a coalition of 120+ state and national organizations calling on Congress to fix the broken Supreme Court — hosted its “We Object” rally on the first day of the Court’s new term. Protesters and advocacy groups joined forces to emphasize the urgency of reining in the Court after a summer when extreme justices attacked core fundamental freedoms and were caught in the pockets of their wealthy benefactors. Visuals from the rally can be found here.
The Court is hearing oral arguments this week for cases that could impact the government’s ability to deliver for people (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau v. Community Financial Services Association of America, Limited), criminal justice (Pulsifer v. United States), disability rights (Acheson Hotels, LLC v. Laufer), and put firearms back in the hands of people who are subject to domestic violence restraining orders (United States v. Rahimi) – all impacting millions of Americans. These cases would allow extreme justices to grab even more power, tilt the scales even further in favor of the majority’s extreme, right-wing political beliefs, and help the ultra-rich get even richer at the expense of working people.
“We are staring down another Supreme Court term in which corrupt, unaccountable justices can grab power for themselves and their friends, impose their extreme ideology on our country, and undermine our system of checks and balances for their own benefit,” said Stasha Rhodes, Campaign Director of United for Democracy. “Now, not in June when it will be too late, is the time to start paying attention and for Congress to do its job.”
Participating groups in this action included Accountable.US, Alliance for Justice, Americans for Financial Reform, Asian Pacific American Labor DC, Common Defense, Center for Popular Democracy, Center for Responsible Lending, End Citizens United // Let America Vote, Faithful America, Indivisible, League of Conservation Voters, National Education Association, National Partnerships For Women & Families, National Women’s Law Center, Reproductive Freedom for All, SPACES in Action, The Workers Circle, Team ENOUGH, Voters of Tomorrow, and Voto Latino, among others.
“Over the last few years, the new 6-3 MAGA supermajority Supreme Court has wasted no time rolling back our rights and protections for our environment,” said Doug Lindner, Senior Director of Judiciary & Democracy for League of Conservation Voters. “If Congress does not act, this pattern will continue, not just this year, and next year, and the year after that, but for generations to come. As the oceans continue to rise, and our democracy continues to backslide. We cannot continue this way.”
“It seems like every week we learn about new cozy relationships between justices and their billionaire pals, lavish gifts and luxury vacations, but the justices have hidden from us a new influence peddling in elite circles. We need action now to fix this legitimacy crisis. We deserve a court that serves everyday Americans, not billionaires and extremists,” said Caroline Ciccone, Executive Director of Accountable.US. “So what's the good news? The American people have noticed and I'll never bet against the will of the American people in demanding better."
“We object to the dismantling of our rights for corporate interests and billionaires using lavish gifts to gain influence, we object to this court being captured to advance an old agenda,” said Jocelyn Frye, President of National Partnerships for Women & Families. “They want to take our country backward, back to a time when women crossed state lines and went to back alleys to get an abortion. When people of color were shut out of elite colleges and universities and LGBTQ+ people and their families were relegated to closets and told to be invisible.”
“Time and time again, we have asked the Supreme Court to create an ethical code of conduct and they have refused,” said Angel Padilla, Vice President for Strategy and Policy for National Women’s Law Center. “In no other profession is it acceptable for someone to break ethical standards and not even be held accountable.”
In July, the Supreme Court ended a term in which its extreme majority struck down student loan relief, handed a free pass to business owners to discriminate against LGBTQ+ customers, slammed the door on efforts by colleges and universities to increase educational opportunities for underrepresented students, and so much more.
Over the summer we learned even more about this Supreme Court’s corruption with revelations of Justice Alito accepting secret billionaire-funded private jet trips and Justice Thomas accepting a shocking 38 vacations, 26 flights on private jets, VIP passes to sporting events, and stays at luxury resorts from his billionaire benefactors.
“Educators across the country are teaching our next generation about the separation of powers and about what the Supreme Court’s role is,” said Mary Kusler, Senior Director of the Center for Advocacy at National Education Association. “What teachers are having to teach across this country does not match the reality of what is happening in the building (the Supreme Court) behind me right now.”
“As we all know more than one year ago, the conservative-majority Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, putting our country into a national healthcare crisis,” said Yvonne Gutierrez, Chief Strategy Officer for Reproductive Freedom for All. “Our democracy is in crisis, attacks on our rights are moving at lightspeed through the federal courts because this system has been rigged in their favor. This is undemocratic and it's against the will of the people.”
“The problem is that Congress is allowing these shenanigans to continue,” said Fari Ghanima Tumpe, Advocate for SPACES in Action. “I hope that we can get some emotionally competent and fair decisions by this Supreme Court.”
“We object to the corruption that is consuming the Supreme Court,” said Jody Murphy, Chief Program Officer, End Citizens United // Let America Vote. “Special interests are getting special access to this court at the expense of working-class families.”
“Like so many young organizers, I know the difficulty of fighting for democracy without even being able to participate in it. I couldn't even vote,” said Eve Thompson-Brown, Advocate for The Workers Circle. “The Supreme Court is an institution that is meant to be the last line of defense that is instead the first to incite danger to our lives that will affect generations to come.”
“As a survivor of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, gun violence has deeply changed my life and I have been forced to live with that trauma and pain every single day since the age of 16,” said Aalayah Eastmond, Co-Founder and Organizer, Team ENOUGH. “In 2022, the Supreme Court’s decision in Bruen opened the floodgates for challenges to gun safety laws and now, the Supreme Court is set to decide whether domestic abusers are allowed to have firearms, potentially putting the lives of countless Americans, particularly women of color, in danger. The Court must do what is right and overturn the egregious, lethal Rahimi decision.”
“If payday lenders are so important to this Court that they would torpedo the financial system then we object,” said Mitria Soptser, Vice President and Federal Policy Director for Center for Responsible Lending. “We're talking about whether or not we have financial rules that keep everyday Americans safe.”
“We're not here to discredit the Court as some suggest. We are here to give voice to the people's belief that this court has discredited itself,” said Jake Faleschini, Program Director for Justice and Legal Director for State Courts for Alliance for Justice. “The justices are playing politics to benefit the party that appointed them.”
United for Democracy is a diverse and growing coalition of more than 120 grassroots organizations, labor unions, and advocates for reproductive rights, gun violence prevention, the environment, workers’ rights and more, all representing tens of millions of Americans. The nationwide campaign launched to educate Americans about the impact today’s Supreme Court is having on their lives, freedoms, and democracy — and call on Congress to rein in its unchecked powers.