LIUNA supports measures that protect every American's right to vote and ensure the government's responsibility to protect this right. Voting is the very cornerstone of our democracy. The Voting Rights Act of 1965, championed by the Civil Rights movement, has played a tremendous role in giving disenfranchised communities – and especially communities of color - a voice at the ballot box. The voter suppression efforts we saw in the 2018 elections such as stricter voter registration laws, registered voter purges, expanded voter ID laws, and poll closures in predominantly poor and minority communities all underscore the need for significantly increased oversight.
In 2013, the Supreme Court’s Shelby County v. Holder decision eviscerated Section 5 of the landmark Voting Rights Act, consequently crippling the federal government’s ability to prevent discriminatory changes to state voting laws and procedures. In the wake of the Shelby County decision, states across the country imposed new voting restrictions that have systematically disenfranchised minority communities and made voting more difficult, or even impossible for some eligible voters.
The Voting Rights Advancement Act introduced by Senators Leahy (D-VT) and Jones (D-AL), and Representatives Sewell (D-AL) and Lewis (D-GA) would restore Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, and provide the federal government with other critical tools to combat what has become a full-fledged assault on Americans’ right to vote. LIUNA calls on Congress to pass S. 561 and H.R. 4.
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