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LETTER: 'Power grab' comment is chilling

Carol Stowell
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., speaks to reporters asking about the threat of another government shutdown following their weekly strategy meeting, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019. With the government funded for three weeks, it's up to a group of House and Senate negotiators to avoid another closure. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

The recent response by Sen. Mitch McConnell to legislation in the House of Representatives intended to make it easier for everyday Americans to vote is a clear indication of the stranglehold that large corporations and the excessively wealthy have on our political system.

When McConnell states that efforts to improve access to voting are a political “power grab,” it should send shivers down the spine of anyone who supports a true democracy.
We citizens should recognize that the true “power grab” has been by corporations and the excessively wealthy since the early 1980s. And many Republican legislators have become the voice of the rich lobbyists who support them.
Fortunately, there are hard-working and mission-driven people who are working to overcome this affront to the people of Pennsylvania and the United States. I am a member of March On Harrisburg and we are using lobbying, marches and civil disobedience to convince politicians to do the right thing when it comes to getting private money out of politics and increase access to voting.

We are meeting with our state legislators in Harrisburg to discuss semi-open primaries that allow independents to vote in primaries, same day registration and no excuse absentee ballots. I was encouraged to speak with two new Republicans – Reps. Meghan Schroeder and Jonathan Hershey – who support expanding voting rights.

Will our long-entrenched Republicans do the same and stand up for voting reform? We will be watching your votes on this important issue in the coming months.

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