Details of the fallout from the voting barriers sweeping the nation

The report also links voter identification laws to falling voter turnout, highlighting a study that found Latino voters 10% less likely to vote if a state had voter identification laws. Besides the cost of the license itself, according to the report, the cost of travel, time off, and waiting for these IDs are factors that discourage people from getting them.

“The burden of these demands falls disproportionately on black, Latino, Asian American and Native American voters and newly naturalized citizens,” the report said. “Recent studies have shown that black and Latino voters are less likely to have access to birth certificates and passports – documents often required to establish proof of citizenship – than white voters.”

Other chapters of the report focus on the lack of access to multilingual voting materials and long queues on election day, the latter compounded by jurisdictions – primarily those in communities where racial minorities are in the majority – close polling stations and hire fewer workers. A report from the Leadership Education Fund found that 1,688 polling stations were closed in districts where access was already limited between 2012 and 2018.

“In 2021, our democracy is under attack,” the report says. “According to the Brennan Center for Justice, as of July 14, 2021, lawmakers had introduced more than 400 bills in 49 states to restrict voting – at least four times the number of restrictive bills introduced two years earlier. at least 18 states have enacted new laws containing provisions restricting access to voting. ”

Voter restriction efforts have intensified in Republican legislatures after their party lost control in every chamber of government in the 2020 election. Although cybersecurity and election security experts agree that “The month of November
3rd [2020] the election was the safest in American history, ”lawmakers have relied on unsubstantiated reports of fraud to tighten voting rules.

Georgia state lawmakers introduced a bill in February that would impose identification requirements on voters for postal voting, reduce the time voters have to request those ballots, and eliminate early voting on Sunday – anything but eliminating the “Souls to the Polls” program run by Black Churches in Georgia, which helped increase its attendance by 22% to a state record in 2020.

In Arizona legislatures, meanwhile, lawmakers introduced bills to purge the voters lists and ban the return of ballots by mail, which allowed for the participation of the State to increase by 27% in the 2020 election. The measures impose burdens on both Latino and Native American minority groups in the state.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement Friday that the report proves what Americans already knew: “Voters of color across the country are being silenced by partisan forces.”

Congressman Al Green, a Democrat from Texas who has protested and legislated in favor of the franchise for years, noted on Friday that when the Voting Rights Act was enacted in 1965, there was no than 14 people of color who were representatives and only 13 others. women who have served in Congress.

“There have been many attacks on the Voting Rights Act over the past 56 years and in 2021 we are still fighting for the full implementation of the 15th Amendment for all eligible voters in our country,” Green said. in a press release. “With voter suppression tactics rampant and restrictive voting legislation introduced in 48 states this year, the right to vote is aggressively threatened.”

The House Judiciary Committee announced that it would hold a hearing on Aug. 17 to examine voting restrictions across the country – asking questions of Deputy Civil Rights Division Attorney General Kristen Clarke. Committee chair Jerry Nadler said it was essential for Congress to consider legislative solutions to protect the right to vote.

“Congress has the power – and even the obligation – to protect the right to vote for all Americans,” Nadler said in a statement. “The House Judiciary Committee will rush to conclude its hearings by taking stock of the ongoing current need for strong and improved voting rights protections and will be ready to introduce the John R. Voting Rights Advancement Act. Lewis in the House. ”

Friday’s report comes four months after another report on HR 1, known as the For the People Act, which offered automatic voter registration, transparency of donor data and widespread early voting. After passing through the Democratic-controlled House, he failed in the Senate with a 50-50 party split, ultimately falling 10 votes out of the 60 votes needed to overcome an obstruction.

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