Viewpoint: Congress must work to protect all eligible voters
This August, our nation honors the 49th historic civil rights legislation crafted to protect against discrimination in voting. Again this year, a gray cloud hangs over this momentous occasion.
Just over a year ago, key components of the VRA [Voting Rights Act] were gutted by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision, leaving room for discrimination to gain a better foothold at the ballot box. While many were hopeful when a bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced the Voting Rights Amendment Act (VRAA) at the beginning of the year, months later, we are still waiting for Congress to finish what it started. The VRAA is a workable, common sense solution that would modernize the elections process and protect voting rights against discrimination.
Without a strong VRA, our ability to fight off anti-voter legislation and keep our elections free, fair and accessible is significantly weakened. During the Congressional recess in August, voters must be loud and clear that the right to vote is fundamental to our democracy. We call on our members of Congress to stand up now for the right to vote for all.
Let’s use this anniversary as motivation. There is no better time than today to push the fight for equality at the ballot box closer to finish line. Congress: Let’s get this done; let’s work to protect our elections and protect the rights of every eligible voter.
Yolan Mistele, president, League of Women Voters of the Northwoods, Arbor Vitae