Restoring Voting Rights

Voting Rights
Democrats are working to restore voting protections and ensure every American can exercise the right to vote.
Every election, Americans head to the polls to exercise their most fundamental right – the right to vote. Unfortunately, Republicans at the state and federal levels have launched an unprecedented attack on voting rights. Over the past few years, measures have been introduced by Republicans in state legislatures across the country that would make it harder for millions of eligible voters to register or vote. Congressional Republicans have worked to shut down the Election Assistance Commission (EAC), which was established by the Help America Vote Act in 2002.  The EAC helps states share and implement best practices in voting technology and provides resources to help protect voter data and keep voting accountable.
In addition, President Trump continues to make unsubstantiated claims that millions of Americans voted illegally in the last election, and he launched a commission to suppress voting and exclude millions of eligible voters from casting their ballot.  The commission is led by a state official known for purging voter rolls and making ballot access more restrictive, and one of the first acts of the commission was to demand Americans’ private information, which could be used to intimidate voters and restrict their right to vote.  Already, there have been reports of some voters de-registering in order to protect their personal information from being taken by the Trump Administration.
House Democrats will not stand for these partisan efforts to hinder access to the ballot. In December 2019, House Democrats passed the Voting Rights Advancement Act to restore the voting rights protections struck down by the Supreme Court in the flawed Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v. Holder. Earlier in 2019, the House passed H.R. 1, the For the People Act, which makes it easier for Americans to exercise their right to vote. House Democrats have also passed the Securing America’s Federal Elections (SAFE) Act, legislation to safeguard our democracy and prevent foreign interference in our elections. The legislation authorizes a grant program to assist states in securing election infrastructure, among other provisions that improve the security and integrity of our elections.
House committees will continue to work on additional legislation to protect voting rights, strengthen election security, and stop continued efforts by foreign entities to subvert our democracy. 
Voting Rights Related
Thank you very much Chair [Carolyn] Maloney and Congresswoman [Eleanor Holmes] Norton. Thank you very much for your leadership, your tenacity, and your focus, and your impetus to this particular piece of legislation.
The President campaigned on numerous promises to the American people, and four years into his presidency, he is letting the American people down on pledge after pledge. Ahead of tonight’s State of the Union Address, here’s a look at what the President promised he would deliver to the American people and how he has fallen short with policies that put the wealthiest ahead of working families:
Madam Chair, thank you very much. Madam Mayor, Chairman [Phil] Mendelson, and others who are here at the table, thank you very much for your presence. I want to thank the Chairman Cummings and Ranking Member Jordan and certainly [Congresswoman] Eleanor Holmes Norton, my colleague and very close friend who has been a champion of this for her entire life as well as her career in Congress of the United States.  
Sunday marked 200 days of a Democratic Majority in the House of Representatives, and in that time, Democrats have made significant progress on behalf of the American people. Democrats have spent the past 200 days advancing our For the People agenda: taking action to lower health care costs and the price of prescription drugs, raise wages, and clean up corruption. Take a look at how Democrats have made progress For the People: 
This week, the House continued its work to fund the government. We have now passed ten of the twelve appropriations bills for the Fiscal Year 2020, which fund 96% of the government.
I was proud to bring the SAFE Act to the Floor today, and now that the House has passed it, I urge the Senate to do the same.  As we look ahead to the 2020 federal election, Congress and the Administration have a responsibility to ensure that every American’s right to vote will be protected and that our voting systems are safe from foreign cyberattacks. 
Today’s Supreme Court decision only further highlights the need for national, comprehensive redistricting reform.
Yesterday, the Democratic-led House joined an amicus brief in support of residents of the District of Columbia seeking recognition of their fundamental right to Congressional representation.
[Justice] Ruth Bader Ginsberg in the Shelby v. Holder case said that the Majority’s opinion was like having an umbrella, and because they weren’t getting wet, they took it down.
I am glad that the Senate has finally confirmed the remaining members of the Election Assistance Commission (EAC), enabling it to carry out its critical work at full capacity.
Well, Tiffany, thank you very, very much for all you’ve done and your leadership of End Citizens United and End Citizens United Action Fund, which has made such a real difference in heightening consciousness about the need to deal with the culture of corruption that has existed here in Washington and the dark money that has so undermined our politics.
The right to vote is the foundation of our system of democratic government, and on National Voter Registration Day I urge every American to exercise that right.
Wanted to be sure you saw this op-ed by Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) in The Hill today.  In light of the latest warnings of foreign interference in the midterms, Whip Hoyer calls on the Republican-led Congress to take action now to protect our elections and provide states with the necessary resources to secure their election infrastructure.  To read the op-ed, click here or see below:


A century and a half ago, after the great struggle to end the evil of slavery, Congress and the states ratified the Fourteenth Amendment, enshrining into our Constitution the principle that all Americans are entitled to equal protection under our laws.
I am very disappointed by today’s ruling in Husted v. APRI.
Earlier this week, at an election security forum hosted by Committee on House Administration member Jamie Raskin (MD-08) and special guest Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05), members of the public heard from election security experts and public officials about the safety of our election infrastructure headed into the 2018 midterm elections.
Americans deserve to have a government that works for them, one that is transparent and trustworthy, one that can be a force for good in their lives.
On Sunday, we mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the enactment of the National Voter Registration Act, of which I was proud to be an original cosponsor. 
Following their visit to the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland yesterday, Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) and Congressman Jamie Raskin (MD-08), announced plans for a public forum on election security in Rockville, Maryland on May 22nd. Raskin serves on the Committee on House Administration, which oversees the EAC.
Wanted to be sure you saw this op-ed by Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) and Rep. Ro Khanna (CA-17) that will run in tomorrow's Baltimore Sun.
This report could not have come at a more important time.  With Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats’s testimony in the Senate yesterday that Russia intends to target the 2018 midterm elections, it is imperative that Congress take steps not only to identify vulnerabilities in voting systems but address them. 
This commission to suppress the vote should never have been created in the first place. It found no fraud because there had been no fraud, and it should not be revived by the Department of Homeland Security.

This past weekend, hackers gathered in Las Vegas with a simple mission: break into America’s electronic voting machines and take control.  Within minutes, some had already succeeded – but that’s a good thing. 


Today’s convening of President Trump’s new commission to suppress the vote represents a new low in Republicans’ partisan efforts to endanger Americans’ most fundamental right to participate equally in our democracy.