Today, LDF submitted testimony to the Connecticut General Assembly Government Administration and Elections Committee in support of the S.B. 1226, An Act Concerning State Voting Rights in Recognition of John R. Lewis. The CTVRA will make Connecticut a national leader on voting rights and equal democracy. In addition to addressing critical needs in Connecticut, S.B. 1226 will place this state at the forefront of a national movement, building on the success of the NYVRA and similar laws in Virginia, Oregon, Washington, and California. Persistent disenfranchising conditions leave voters of color exposed to disproportionate burdens in exercising the right to vote. Connecticut has a long history of voting discrimination and the CTVRA will dismantle barriers to voting and ensure access to the ballot for all Connecticut voters.
By enacting S.B. 1226’s measures, Connecticut can turn the page on its discriminatory past and pave the way for a more equal future. Equitable voting rights protections, like those in the federal VRA and state-level voting rights acts, have had powerful effects in making the democratic process fairer, more equal, and more inclusive. These effects include reducing racial turnout disparities, making government more responsive to the needs and legislative priorities of communities of color, and increasing diversity in government office, so that elected representatives more fully reflect the communities they serve
Read the full testimony here.
LDF Policy Counsel Steven Lance will be testifying at a hearing today. The hearing can be watched live here.
Founded in 1940, the Legal Defense Fund (LDF) is the nation’s first civil rights law organization. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Please note that LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights.