Members of the Black, Latinx communities denounce efforts to stifle their votes as January 6 insurrection hearings continue
HARRISBURG, PA — Scores of Pennsylvanians representing the immigrant, Black and Latinx communities gathered at the steps of the State Capitol in Harrisburg on Thursday, protesting state Sen. Doug Mastriano’s (R) bid for governor.
“We want to see Mastriano and other members of congress held accountable for the January 6th attacks,” said CASA in Action Advocacy Specialist Maria Diaz Peon, referring to Mastriano’s presence at the U.S. Capitol during the January 6, 2021 attack which aimed to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. “We are here to make sure that ALL who participated are held accountable,” she added. Despite his role in the attack on the U.S. Capitol — which included organizing bus rides for Trump supporters who became involved in the insurrection — Mastriano has faced no formal consequences. On May 17, he secured the Republican nomination for governor of Pennsylvania.
CASA in Action, @MaketheRoadAct PA, & We the People – Action Pennsylvania, is at the Pennsylvania Capitol demanding that Doug Mastriano be held accountable for helping with the January 6th attack on democracy. pic.twitter.com/6XYVQwQLpy
— CASA in Action (@CASAinAction) June 23, 2022
During the protest, participants wore pieces of tape over their mouths and later tore them off, in a symbolic rebuke of Mastriano and other far-right politicians’ efforts to silence the votes of Black and Latinx voters. The event was led by organizations CASA in Action, Make the Road Action PA, and We the People – Action Pennsylvania.
“We want Mastriano to admit to the public that he did something wrong,” Diaz Peon said. “We want Mastriano to be removed from the state Senate, and we want Mastriano to be prosecuted for the part he played in the January 6th attacks.”
CASA in Action member Yeni Amaya — a mother of four originally from the Dominican Republic who has voted in the U.S. since she became a naturalized citizen — lambasted Mastriano’s involvement in the attack on the Capitol, as well as his decision to run for governor.
After the 2020 presidential elections, “heartless politicians attacked our democracy,” Amaya said. “They tried to invalidate the vote of many of us, the people who decide” the outcome of those elections. She expressed outrage over Mastriano’s involvement in the insurrection, calling him and fellow conspirators in Pennsylvania “an imminent danger to our country’s democracy.”
With more than 122,000+ lifetime members, CASA in Action is the foremost Latino and immigrant organization in the Mid-Atlantic region and a national leader in supporting immigrant families and ensuring that all individuals have the core supports necessary for full participation in society.