House and Senate Democrats have introduced the Voter Empowerment Act, which is a piece of legislation written by the late Rep. John Lewis.
The bill introduced in the House and Senate by U.S. House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn, Congresswoman Nikema Williams, Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Reverend Raphael Warnock ensures equal access to the ballot for all Americans and protects voting rights.
Here are the features of the bill:
Ensure Access to the Ballot
– Modernize the voter registration system
– Ensure access to online voter registration
– Ensure ballots are counted from Americans serving in the military or overseas
– Allow same day registration
– Notify voters when voting changes are made
– Encourage youth to become voters
– Assist voters with disabilities
– Restore rehabilitated citizens’ right to vote
Preserve Integrity in Voting Systems
– Provide informed and reliable poll workers
– Count all provisional ballots
– Prohibit voter caging
– Protect voters from deceptive practices and intimidation
Demand Accountability in Election Administration
– Create a national voter hotline
– Ensure votes are counted correctly
– Reauthorize the Election Assistance Commission
“The late Congressman John Lewis nearly gave his life to secure the right to vote and I am committed to honoring his legacy and preserving our democracy,” said Whip Clyburn. “That is why I am proud to introduce the Voter Empowerment Act with Congresswoman Williams and Senators Gillibrand and Warnock. This bill will strengthen critically-needed ballot box protections in this country. As lawmakers, it is our responsibility to ensure that all eligible Americans have the right to cast a ballot that will be counted and make their voices heard.”
The voting rights bills are going to be the trigger for filibuster reform. Senate Majority Leader Schumer intends to introduce the For The People Act on the Senate floor so that Republicans can block it will prove to all members of the caucus that Republicans will not work with Democrats on anything, so the filibuster must be changed.
“Voting rights are preservative of every right in our democracy, and the Voter Empowerment Act, originally authored by my parishioner and mentor John Lewis, is one of the most important steps we can take to expand access to the ballot and help ensure that the people are able to make their voices heard,” said Senator Reverend Warnock. “Especially following the rash of voter suppression proposals being enacted in Georgia and offered nationwide, this critical legislation will make it easier for people to vote and is essential to ensuring our democracy is by the people and working for the people. I’m proud to stand with Senator Gillibrand, Chairman Clyburn and Representative Williams in honoring the legacy of our hero by working to get this legislation over the finish line.”
Even though Rep. Lewis is no longer with us, his fight for voting rights and his legislative presence live on in the Democratic Party.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association