New York, NY, July 14, 2006 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) hailed action by the House of Representatives to strengthen and reauthorize expiring sections of the landmark Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965, which provided the legal basis for protecting equal access to the ballot box for all Americans. The League called on the Senate to promptly join the House in approving this legislation.
"The Voting Rights Act is one of our nation's most important and effective civil rights laws," said Barbara B. Balser, ADL National Chair and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "The Act has eliminated discriminatory barriers to full civic participation for millions of Americans -- and sparked significant advances for equal political participation at all levels of government."
The House measure, officially known as "The Fannie Lou Hamer, Rosa Parks, and Coretta Scott King Voting Rights Act Reauthorization and Amendments Act of 2006," was introduced after extensive congressional hearings revealed continuing and persistent barriers to full ballot access for Americans in many parts of the country.
"The League has long demonstrated a strong commitment to voting rights for all Americans -- including language-minority citizens who deserve the opportunity to cast an informed ballot," said Ms. Balser and Mr. Foxman. "We are pleased to be part of the very large coalition of groups supporting reauthorization of this vital legislation. We urge the Senate to promptly join the House in approving this measure."