Expanding and Protecting Voting Rights in 2022

January 28, 2022Israel Harris

Last week, a narrow majority of Senators failed to protect Americans' voting rights.

We are deeply disappointed by Senators' failure to make the necessary reform to the outdated filibuster that prevented the passage of the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act. This bill would have modernized the preclearance formula of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and established national standards for federal elections. However, we remain committed to working with our allies, community members, and fellow activists to ensure that every person can make their voice heard and cast their ballot, regardless of race, zip code, or political affiliation.

We remember that during the Civil Rights era, leaders experienced years of resistance before the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts were passed in 1964 and 1965. We must act with the same determination.

Our story does not end here.

What happens now?

  • President Biden expansively and comprehensively implements his Executive Order on Promoting Access to Voting. Federal agencies have been instructed to better communicate how citizens can be given greater access to voter registration, and receive the necessary election information to cast their ballot.
  • Get involved in combatting voter suppression in your state. Over 440 restrictive voting laws were introduced in 2021 by 49 states, and 34 of these anti-voter laws have already been passed in 19 different states. Without federal legislation, constituents are encouraged to join state-level democracy campaigns.
  • Act on your right to vote! Until federal legislation is passed to protect voting rights nationwide, it is essential, particularly for constituents and community members of states that continue to pass discriminatory laws, to make your voice heard by casting your ballot. Review your voter registration status, and make sure you register before your state's deadline.
  • Continue to engage with the RAC as we launch our 2022 nonpartisan Civic Engagement Campaign. The Reform Movement believes democracy is strongest when everyone participates and is weakest when citizens are shut out from the democratic process. Voting is how "we the people" use our power to determine our future. The way to combat voter suppression is through massive voter registration and mobilization.

For more information on our Freedom to Vote Campaign, see our Freedom to Vote Backgrounder.

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