Trump-era battles continue amid “state-to-state attack on civil rights”: ACLU president.
There is an ongoing “state-by-state assault on civil rights” that has seen the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) fight battles similar to those it had under President Donald Trump, according to the group’s president.
“We are waging some of those struggles that we fought under the previous administration now on a state-by-state level,” said ACLU President Deborah Archer. OkeyNews at Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal, described this change as “unexpected” and “challenging”.
“The ACLU has been at the forefront rejecting those attacks in areas ranging from voting rights to LGBTQ rights, to reproductive freedom, where civil rights and civil liberties are under attack from many directions.
“And it has been challenging work to fight on all those fronts.”
The ACLU filed hundreds of legal actions against the Trump Administration during its four years in office, including challenges over access to abortion, voting rights, and immigration.
Archer, who assumed his role as leader of the civil rights group in February, described the first post-Trump period as “an important year.”
“I think the job has been challenging and we certainly knew that after the election, we would have to spend time … helping rebuild and strengthen the communities that were attacked and damaged by the Trump Administration,” Archer said.
The Biden Administration “has many values that are in line with what the ACLU believes,” he said. But there is work to be done with the administration.
“They say they are concerned about racial justice. They say they are concerned about privacy. They want to protect freedom of expression,” he said.
“They have the stated goal of challenging mass incarceration to tackle racialized police.
“And so I think our job is … to make them deliver on those promises and push them to keep those promises and their values and their oath to protect civil rights, civil liberties for all.”
Archer added: “I certainly think there are some challenges so far so they are not going as far as we would like them to go as fast as we would like them to go and we will push them.
“But I think we imagine there would be a different scenario under the Biden Administration, but we are still fighting and pushing them as we would with any administration, Republican or Democratic.”
“And then we have the added layer that we are fighting some of those struggles that we fought under the previous administration now on a state-by-state level.”
In terms of specific areas, Archer said immigration was a key point of focus.
“The Trump administration was allowed to do what it did in part because our immigration system has been broken for a long time,” Archer said.
“But also around family separation. There are thousands of families who are still separated from their children, children who are far from their parents.
“And we are working with the administration, trying to pressure the administration to reunite those families faster and allow them to stay in the United States and give them the kind of resources they need to recover from the trauma that we have as a country.” I have inflicted upon them. ”
In addition, Archer said that he “is not seeing enough action around the police … we are not seeing movement there” on police accountability and transparency.
She continued: “There is much more than the Biden administration can do on its own to protect our right to vote that they have not done yet.”