AUSTIN, Texas - The Moral March For Democracy came to an end at the Capitol Saturday morning.
The rally, which was organized by The Poor People’s Campaign and its partners, concludes the 27-mile Moral March for Democracy that began in Georgetown earlier this week. The march was part of the Season of Nonviolent Moral Direct Action that continues Monday, Aug. 2, with a march led by faith leaders, poor people, and low-wage workers in Washington, D.C.
Organizers have compared this march to the one from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, in 1965, to push Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act.
Hundreds of people flooded the Capitol grounds in support.
"It's a beautiful day to fight for the freedom to vote in Texas," said one speaker.
The rally in front of the capitol was meant to signify the continued fight for voting rights in Texas.
"The values we hold so dear are under attack. We have to push back and say enough is enough. That is what we are all doing here now. Today,we are using our voices, our bodies, our minds, our hearts, and spirit to fight for those values and the rights that reflect those values. We will not be denied," said another speaker.
Luci B. Johnson, daughter of President Lyndon B. Johnson, was invited as a special guest due to her ties to the history of American and Texas politics. She says her father would be proud of the rally.
"Now, more than ever before, we need to come and reason together to build a more just America," Johnson said.
"There are people from every single part of this state who chose to be here right now to stand up and be counted at this moment for our state, for our country, for democracy," said former US congressman Beto O’Rourke.
O’Rourke, who also marched, spoke at the rally to show his support for the cause.
"Are we going to fight for the right to vote? Yes. Are we going to give up until we get it? No. We're gonna push through. We're gonna push through until we win this," said O’Rourke.
The rally concluded with a musical performance from country music legend Willie Nelson.
Dozens of people spoke at the rally. They all had the same list of demands for Congress:
- Restoration of the full Voting Rights Act
- Passage of the For the People's Act
- An end to the filibuster
- An increase in the federal minimum wage to $15/hour
- Fair and respectful treatment of the nation's 11 million immigrants