Defend democracy in the South.

Benjamin Barber

Researcher/Writer

Benjamin Barber is the democracy program coordinator at the Institute for Southern Studies, a contributing writer for Facing South, and a graduate of the School of Social Policy & Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. He also holds a bachelor's degree in history from Barton College in Wilson, North Carolina. Benjamin previously interned with the Equal Justice Initiative in Alabama and with Facing South, and he served as the historian for the North Carolina NAACP Youth and College Division. His research focuses on voting rights, democracy, and Southern history.

 
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Articles by Benjamin Barber

A Senate fight is brewing over the Freedom to Vote Act — and the filibuster

September 29, 2021 - Senate Democrats recently introduced the Freedom to Vote Act, a compromise alternative to the For the People Act, far-reaching pro-democracy legislation blocked by a Republican filibuster. If the GOP again uses the filibuster to obstruct the bill, Democrats say they'll take on reforming the Senate policy, which requires 60 votes to end debate on a measure. But that will require moving conservative Democrats like West Virginia's Joe Manchin, a filibuster defender who's also among the new bill's sponsors.

Demonstrators will gather in Washington to demand federal voting protections

August 18, 2021 - On the anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington, protestors will once again descend on the nation's capital as well as cities across the South to demand congressional action on civil rights. They're pressing for passage of the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, which have been stalled in the Senate because of Republican obstruction and some Democrats' unwillingness to end the filibuster.