Today, the United States House of Representatives voted to pass the voting rights and election reform bill, H.R. 1 (the “For the People Act”). Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) issued the following statement in response to the vote:
“We commend the House of Representatives for passing H.R. 1 today, as this legislation is critical to ensuring that every citizen can freely exercise their right to vote. Following the 2020 general election — in which we saw relentless and unprecedented efforts to suppress votes from communities of color — it is abundantly clear that sweeping, systemic change is needed to ensure that every voter can readily access the ballot box and make their voice heard.
“Over 130 years ago, the Supreme Court declared the right to vote as ‘fundamental’ and ‘preservative of all rights.’ That right is under concerted attack. This week, state legislatures across the country are churning out bills designed to make it harder for racial minorities to cast ballots and participate in the political process. It is more imperative than ever that robust federal protections are enacted to guarantee that voters can freely exercise this fundamental right, which is the cornerstone of our democracy.
“Now, that the House has acted, we call on the United States Senate to immediately take up and pass H.R. 1. Ensuring that this legislation becomes law is a crucial component of the broader effort to make our electoral system fair and accessible to all — especially those who have been historically disenfranchised.”
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. 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. 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 NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Follow LDF on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.