December 14, 2011
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AUSTIN, TEXAS – U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder reminded Americans tonight of the importance of the right to vote in a thriving democracy.
In a speech from the LBJ Library, Holder discussed the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and how voter suppression laws in states across the country are posing a new challenge to all Americans’ access to the ballot.
“Prior to the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, African Americans seeking their right to vote faced violence at the polls,” said Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU senior legislative counsel. “Today’s state efforts to suppress the vote may be more subtle than in 1965, but the result is the same: pushing certain groups of people out of the electorate. Today, Attorney General Eric Holder gave a historic address on voting rights and reiterated the Department of Justice's commitment to protecting access to the ballot so that all Americans have the right to participate in our democracy.”
The ACLU filed a federal lawsuit today charging that Wisconsin’s voter ID law is unconstitutional and will deprive citizens of their basic right to vote.