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Today, We Stand Together for Voting Rights

by Rachel Rye Butler

June 25, 2015

A healthy democracy is one free of voter disenfranchisement. Two years ago today, the Supreme Court dealt a serious blow to American democracy when it gutted the Voting Rights Act in its Shelby County v. Holder decision, opening the door to race-based voter discrimination.

A healthy democracy is one free of voter disenfranchisement. Two years ago today, the Supreme Court dealt a serious blow to American democracy when it gutted the Voting Rights Act in its Shelby County v. Holder decision, opening the door to race-based voter discrimination.

Today, on the second anniversary of that decision, organizations representing millions of people—including civil rights, labor, environmental, LGBTQ organizations, good government groups, and others—are standing behind civil rights leaders in Roanoke, Virginia, to call for the Voting Rights Act to be restored and for voting rights to be upheld for all Americans.

The Leadership Conference on Human Rights, one of the nation’s leading civil rights groups and leader of the rally for voting rights in Roanoke puts it this way: “Unless Congress acts, voters in 2016 will face the first presidential election in 50 years where they will lack crucial protections in federal law to combat racial discrimination in voting.”

In just the first ten months after the Court’s Shelby decision gutted protections against racial and language-minority voter discrimination, nine states passed ‘New Jim Crow’ style voter identification laws that make it more difficult to vote.

Everyone Deserves Equal Voice in a Democracy

In our democracy, all Americans—especially communities already on the font lines of the climate crisis—must have access to one of the most fundamental rights of our democracy.

Equality and justice are part of our shared vision for the future. Today in Roanoke, we stand with our allies to move that vision forward. It’s high time that Congress restores the Voting Rights Act.

Rachel Rye Butler

By Rachel Rye Butler

Rachel Rye Butler is a campaigner at Greenpeace USA

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