Senate Democrats

REID REAFFIRMS COMMITMENT TO VOTING RIGHTS ACT

Republicans Hope to Use Courts to Kill Vital Legislation

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Harry Reid of Nevada condemned Republican efforts to use federal courts to kill a vital provision of the Voting Rights Act. The Voting Rights Act and its subsequent reauthorizations is one of the most important laws ever passed by Congress. It provides and protects the rights of Americans who have been discriminated against based on the color of their skin while trying to cast their ballot.

Despite a bi-partisan effort in Congress and a bi-partisan White House ceremony where President Bush signed the bill into law, the American Enterprise Institute along with Congressional Republicans are filing law suits to kill the Voting Rights Act. They are seeking to strike down Section 5 which freezes new election procedures in certain states until they have either received an administrative review by the United States Attorney General, or after a lawsuit before the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

“Republican efforts to kill this vital section of the Voting Rights Act are both appalling and hypocritical,” said Reid. “Democratic and Republican leaders worked to pass this bill, now forces in the Republican Party want to continue the argument against democracy and look for new ways to reduce the number of minorities who vote. Democrats will fight for the right of every American citizen to participate in clean, fair elections. I call on the President and every Republican co-sponsor of this legislation to condemn the AEI and their allies an end this legal campaign to kill the Voting Rights Act.”

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