Wednesday, August 07, 2019

CAPAC Members Commemorate 54th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act

CAPAC Members Commemorate 54th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act
Washington, DC — Today marks the 54th anniversary of the enactment of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. In commemoration of this anniversary, Members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) issued the following statements:
Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Chair:

“Aswe mark the 54th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, it is important to remember that not all Americans have equal access to polls. As CAPAC Chair, I remain dedicated to passing legislation to restore the vote and ensure that every American has a voice in our democracy.”

Congresswoman Grace Meng (NY-06), CAPAC First Vice Chair:  

“The landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act worked to ensure that the right to vote is guaranteed to all Americans, regardless of their race, class, or zip code. However, the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby v. Holder diminished protections for voters and this disenfranchisement remains rampant in many states across the country. Our democracy cannot properly function if so many Americans are denied access to the ballot box. I will continue my work in Congress to ensure that the voice of every American is heard in our democracy.”

Congressman Ed Case (HI-01):

“We remember another anniversary of the Voting Rights Act because we can never take the right of all Americans to vote for granted, Whether from acts seeking to weaken the law as we saw in Shelby vs. Holder, or from attacks from foreign countries or non-state entities as was so clearly documented in the Mueller report, the rights confirmed in this critical landmark law must be the subject of constant vigilance.”

Congressman TJ Cox (CA-21):

“54 years ago, Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which ensured equal opportunity for all Americans, regardless of race or ethnicity, to vote for their candidate of choice.  But our work is not over. We must strive every day to combat systemic and institutionalized racism in order to make our nation more equal and give more people the opportunity to achieve the American Dream. As a Congressional leader, I will work to ensure that the aims and intentions of the Voting Rights Act aren’t undermined by those who wish to roll back its protections.”

Congressman Gil Cisneros (CA-39):

“Today marks the 54th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a landmark piece of legislation which helped to ensure that all Americans could exercise their fundamental right to vote. However, we must continue to fight to ensure that every citizen has a path to the ballot box and can participate fully in our government. The right to vote is the cornerstone of our government and we must continue to fight to guarantee that all Americans’ votes are fairly and equally counted.”

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (WA-09):

“The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was a landmark victory for equality for communities of color across our nation, affirming the fundamental right that every American should be able to vote. Sadly, our democracy is under attack. Foreign election interference and unchecked voter suppression have eroded these rights for millions of people – especially communities of color and those living in poverty. While voting access has long been a target of those in power, these troubled times require a certain vigilance. That is why I am working with my colleagues day-in and day-out to protect this fundamental right and safeguard our democracy to ensure every voter can make their voices heard.”

Congressman Ro Khanna (CA-17):

“54 years ago today, the Voting Rights Act enfranchised millions of Americans, giving many who had never before had the opportunity the right to vote. Yet, under the Trump Administration, Americans of all background have faced new burdens on their right to vote. The 2013 Shelby County v. Holder decision enabled states to legally enact many of the barriers the VRA had specifically outlawed, a shameful reversal compromising America’s ability to stand as a true democracy. Voters of color and low-income voters are most at risk of being unable to exercise their right to vote, and I will continue to stand up for every American’s equal voting right.”

Congressman Colin Allred (TX-32):

“It has been 54 years since the landmark Voting Rights Act was signed into law, helping to ensure that no matter who you are or where you live, every citizen can participate in our American democracy. My story would not be possible without the Voting Rights Act. As a voting rights attorney, I know we have come a long way, but we still have more work to do to ensure everyone has equal and uninhibited access to the ballot box”

Congresswoman Katherine Clark (MA-05):

“As we celebrate the passage of the Voting Rights Act, we acknowledge that the struggle for voting rights is not a fight from a bygone era, but an ongoing battle for fair representation. Since the Supreme Court’s harmful decision in the Shelby County case, state and local governments have attempted to systematically disenfranchise people of color by making it harder to vote. Like every generation before us, we must affirm our commitment to the most basic American principle: government of, by, and for the people.”

Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52):

“Fifty-four years ago, the Voting Rights Act created landmark protections for one of America’s most sacred duties: the right to vote. I am working to ensure we restore and protect voting rights, so the ballot box is accessible to all. It’s past time we fully restore and modernize of the Voting Rights Act so every American can exercise their constitutional duty free from intimidation and disenfranchisement.”

Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez (NY-07):

“The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was a monumental step towards affirming equality at the ballot box. Today, however, we cannot talk about the VRA without talking about Shelby County v. Holder and its endorsement of racial discrimination and voter suppression. In New York City, we’ve seen very clearly that some of our most vulnerable populations – communities of color, young people, students and women – are more likely to encounter obstacles to exercising their most basic right. We must work to restore the democratic protections of the Voting Rights Act because we cannot afford for any voter to be silenced.”

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