MLK Family: No Passage Of Voting Rights, No MLK Day Celebration

family of Martin Luther King Jr. is calling for "no celebration" of MLK Day without the passage of voting rights legislation
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(CNN)--The family of Martin Luther King Jr. is calling for "no celebration" of MLK Day without the passage of voting rights legislation, putting pressure on President Joe Biden and lawmakers to act on federal voting rights bills that have stalled in Congress.

Martin Luther King III, his wife Arndrea Waters King and their daughter Yolanda Renee King plan to mobilize activists on MLK weekend to push for Biden and Congress to apply the same efforts to federal voting rights bills that they used to pass the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill. They hope to send the message: "you delivered for bridges, now deliver for voting rights."

"President Biden and Congress used their political muscle to deliver a vital infrastructure deal, and now we are calling on them to do the same to restore the very voting rights protections my father and countless other civil rights leaders bled to secure," Martin Luther King III said in a statement Wednesday, adding that they "will not accept empty promises in pursuit of my father's dream for a more equal and just America."

The Kings and local groups plan to rally supporters in Phoenix on January 15, the date of King's birthday, "to restore and expand voting rights to honor Dr. King's legacy." The Kings chose to mobilize in Arizona because of its "draconian" voting rights law, provisions of which the US Supreme Court upheld this year and in doing so limit the ability of minority voters to challenge state laws under the Voting Rights Act.

On January 17, the federal holiday commemorating the civil rights leader's birthday, the family and other activists will march across the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge in Washington, DC. Read more.

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