MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Shelby County Commissioner Tami Sawyer says she was among 25 activists arrested Tuesday in a voting rights protest at the White House.
A spokesperson for People for the American Way, one of the groups that organized the protest, said Sawyer and 25 others were charged, but not taken into custody.
The protest called on President Joe Biden to use the influence of his office to get the Freedom to Vote Act passed in the Senate and end the filibuster.
The bill calls for automatic voter registration, same-day registration and making Election Day a federal holiday, among other measures. A vote is expected Wednesday, but it is expected to die without an end to the filibuster rule in the Senate.
“As a Black southerner, I came to DC to represent one of the most disenfranchised demographics in the country. Collectively, we bet on President Joe Biden and now it’s time for him to settle up. Do not continue to take for granted the very people who supported your journey to the White House, because where would you be if we could no longer vote? End the filibuster now,” Sawyer said in a press release from People for the American Way, one of the groups who organized the protest.
Sawyer’s first term as District 7 representative on the county commission ends Aug. 31 of 2022 after her election in 2018. She announced in August that she would not seek a second term.
Other arrests include the actor Alyssa Milano and Ben Jealous, former president of the NAACP.