Read the PDF version of our statement here.
We do not need a federal investigation into a myth. The evidence is clear: there is no widespread in-person voter fraud. There is certainly no evidence of the breathtaking claim that three million illegal votes were cast. There is proven evidence, however, of voter suppression found by multiple federal courts. That should be the focus of federal action.
There is no doubting the documented evidence that millions of minority voters lost equal access to the ballot box as a result of voter suppression schemes enacted in towns, counties, and states across the country in the wake of the Supreme Court’s disastrous Shelby decision gutting of the Voting Rights Act (VRA).
Instead of wasting time and taxpayer dollars in pursuit of a debunked fantasy, Mr. Trump should support an amendment to the VRA that would require that voter suppression efforts based on race trigger federal oversight in the form of preclearance.
Mr. Trump’s incendiary misrepresentations have been roundly rejected across party lines, including by state officials responsible for the oversight of elections. This order demonstrates what we now expect of the president. He ignores proven, legitimate civil rights violations in favor of using the bully pulpit to challenge the legitimacy of ballots cast by minority voters. This is consistent with his shameful statements during the campaign when he encouraged his supporters to “watch voters” in “urban areas.” Every American who believes in civil rights and our democratic institutions and is committed to the hard-won right of minorities to participate equally in the political process should resist this effort to turn our attention away from the truth of voter suppression and towards a cynical promotion of a long and fully disproven myth of voter fraud.
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization and 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.