Restore the Voting Rights Act

URGE CONGRESS TO PASS THE VOTING RIGHTS ADVANCEMENT ACT TO REPAIR, RESTORE, & STRENGTHEN THE 1965 VOTING RIGHTS ACT

THE ISSUE

The right to vote is one of the most valuable, and many would argue even sacred constitutional rights granted to most Americans. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA) was enacted to insure that those Constitution 15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, no one, including federal, state or local government may in any way impede people from registering to vote or voting because of their race or ethnicity.  Most provisions in the VRA, and specifically the portions that guarantee that no one may be denied the right to vote because of his or her race or color, are permanent.  

Section 5 of the VRA requires certain states or jurisdictions, which have an established history of laws or policies which result in the disenfranchisement of a group of racial or ethnic minority voters to obtain advance approval or “preclearance” from the US Department of Justice or the US District Court in D.C. before they can make any changes to voting practices or procedures.  Examples of these changes include any change in the date, time, place, or manner under which an election is held.  Federal approval is to be given as soon as the state or jurisdiction proves that the proposed change would not abridge the right to vote on account of race or color.  

On June 25, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in the case of Shelby v. Holder in which the Court did not invalidate the principle of preclearance. The Supreme Court did decide, however, that Section 4(b) of the VRA, which establishes the formula that is used to determine which states and jurisdictions must comply with preclearance, is antiquated and thus unconstitutional and can no longer be used. Thus, although Section 5 survives, it is currently not being used and will not be used until Congress enacts a new formula to determine who should be covered by it. 

The Voting Rights Advancement Act, S. 1659, is sponsored in the U.S. Senate by Senators Patrick Leahy (VT), Lisa Murkowski (AK) and more than 30 others.  Companion legislation, H.R. 2867 was introduced in the U.S. House by Congresswoman Terri Sewell and Congressman John Lewis (GA) on behalf of themselves, the Congressional Black Caucus, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and the Congressional Asian and Pacific American Caucus among others.  This seminal legislation would:  modernize the preclearance formula to cover states with an historical pattern of discrimination; ensure that last-minute voting changes won’t adversely affect voters; protect voters from the types of voting changes most likely to discriminate against people of color and language minorities; enhance the ability to apply a preclearance review when needed; expand the effective Federal Observer Program; and improve voting Rights protections for Native Americans and Alaska Natives.  Furthermore, this legislation includes all of the priorities necessary for a strong VRA restoration as established by the NAACP National Board of Directors. 

We must tell Congress – both the House and the Senate – that the time to act is now!  We must not delay and allow one more American to face unnecessary, unconstitutional, and undemocratic obstacles as they try to vote. 

THE NAACP STRONGLY SUPPORTS S. 1659 / H.R. 2867 AND URGES ALL OF THE PROVISIONS CONTAINED IN THE BILL BE ENACTED.

Forty counties in North Carolina were previously covered by Section 5 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

North Carolina:

         
 

Anson County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Beaufort County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Bertie County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Bladen County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Camden County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 3317

Mar. 2, 1966

 

Caswell County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Chowan County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Cleveland County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Craven County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Cumberland County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Edgecombe County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Franklin County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Gaston County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Gates County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Granville County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Greene County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Guilford County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Halifax County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Harnett County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Hertford County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Hoke County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Jackson County

 

Nov. 1, 1972

40 FR 49422

Oct. 22, 1975

 

Lee County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Lenoir County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Martin County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 19

Jan. 4, 1966

 

Nash County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Northampton County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Onslow County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Pasquotank County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Perquimans County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 3317

Mar. 2, 1966

 

Person County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Pitt County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Robeson County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Rockingham County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Scotland County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Union County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 5081

Mar. 29, 1966

 

Vance County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Washington County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

31 FR 19

Jan. 4, 1966

 

Wayne County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965

 

Wilson County

 

Nov. 1, 1964

30 FR 9897

Aug. 7, 1965


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