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The importance of free and fair elections

Fear and anger.

That's what I felt one year ago as I sheltered in my office while thousands of rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol building. Hundreds of them, many heavily armed, broke into the building with the intent of stopping the certification of a free and fair election. This was a terrifying and outrageous attack on my colleagues, our staff, the U.S. Capitol Police, and our democratic republic.

I was there that day, so I know that what happened was real. But conspiracy theories still spread, and Trump's "Big Lie" about the 2020 election continues to divide our country. Two-thirds of Republican voters believe that there was significant fraud in the 2020 election—despite all evidence to the contrary.

We must hold Republican leaders and their allies accountable for their blatant spread of misinformation. Importantly, we must stop them from leveraging this deceit to deny voting rights to millions of Americans.

Right now, across the country, they are implementing new voter ID laws, rolling back early and mail-in voting, and limiting polling places on Election Day. January 6th has strengthened my determination to advance voting rights, and I'm proud to have helped the House pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Democracy is fragile. It is up to us to protect it by safeguarding voting rights.

In the wee hours of the morning on January 7th, 2021, after unimaginable violence and destruction, we walked through the wreckage and returned to the House chamber to finish our work and certify the results of the 2020 election. Every day I'm in the Capitol I remember January 6th, the heroism of the Capitol Police, and the lessons we learned about the importance of a peaceful transition of power.

Your generous words of support and comfort over the last year have meant a lot to my staff and me. I am grateful for your continued commitment and partnership.

Thank you for standing with me,

Suzanne

Posted on January 6, 2022.

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Meet Suzanne

Suzanne knows what it’s like to struggle to make ends meet. She worked her way through community college, university, and law school. She started her career at Legal Aid and worked as a consumer rights attorney. Throughout her career she’s been a leading advocate for public education, protecting the environment, and civil rights. She’s fighting for a better future for all Oregonians.

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