Washington, DC – Foreign Policy for America lauded the announcement of a new voting rights bill in the House, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Voting rights are at the heart of our democracy and the source of our strength and inspiration abroad. Urgent action is needed to safeguard this most basic right for all Americans.
In states around the country, we have seen outrageous legislative attempts to restrict the ability of Americans to vote. Worse still, several states are now working to end non-partisan election administration, and instead hand over power to partisan political leaders to determine results. America’s commitment to pluralism, equality, and non-partisan election administration are the hallmarks of our democracy and have inspired transitions to democracy in every region of the world. But today, our future is in doubt.
The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act would restore key ballot access provisions enshrined in the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that were dramatically weakened by 2013 Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v. Holder. This legislation passed the House in the 116th Congress, only to stall out in the Senate. FP4A calls on the House of Representatives to quickly take up and pass this bill and urges equally speedy Senate passage.
“American leadership in the world isn’t an accident,” said Andrew Albertson, Executive Director of Foreign Policy for America. “We’re able to rally allies and mobilize action on the biggest global challenges because of who we are as a pluralistic, democratic country that for generations has inspired the world. Today’s action is needed to safeguard our democracy – the beating heart of our prosperity and strength. I commend Representative Terri Sewell for leading on this important legislation, and I urge Congress to act.”