Spanberger Helps Introduce Legislation to Preserve Voting Protections, Defend the Rights of Virginians

The Legislation Would Restore the Voting Rights Act, Prevent Voter Suppression, & Strengthen Election Transparency in Areas with a History of Voter Discrimination

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger helped introduce legislation to protect voter equality and ensure voter access in Virginia and across the country.

Spanberger is a cosponsor of the Voting Rights Advancement Act (VRAA) of 2019, which would require states and localities with a recent history of voter discrimination to seek federal approval from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) before making any changes to their electoral laws. The legislation would ensure that states like Virginia are required to obtain preclearance for changes to voting practices and procedures. This provision would protect against voter disenfranchisement by ensuring laws are approved and constitutional before going into effect.

“Courageous men and women from Richmond, Virginia to Selma, Alabama and across the country risked their lives and livelihoods to fight for equal access to the ballot box. Their perseverance, bravery, and commitment to justice inspire me, decades later, to ensure that we are protecting the most foundational aspect of our democracy—our electoral system,” said Spanberger. “As some states attempt to erect new barriers that make it harder to vote, we must reaffirm our commitment to protect voting rights, restore the critical provisions established under the Voting Rights Act, and counteract voter suppression efforts that intentionally seek to disenfranchise voters. When voting rights are infringed, Congress must speak up—and I’m proud to help introduce this legislation to make sure all citizens can fully participate in our political process.”

Specifically, the Spanberger-backed VRAA restores the protection and enforcement of the Voting Rights Act after being gutted by the 2013 Shelby v. Holder Supreme Court decision. The VRAA restores Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act by creating a new coverage formula to determine which states and localities with a recent history of voting rights violations over the last 25 years must preclear election changes with the DOJ.

The VRAA also includes strengthened protections for Native Americans, naturalized citizens, and voters with disabilities. The bill is led by U.S. Representatives Terri Sewell (D-AL-07), Joaquin Castro (D-TX-20), and Judy Chu (D-CA-27).

The VRAA is endorsed by the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights; Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law; Brennan Center for Justice; Human Rights Campaign (HRC); Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC); National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund; Native American Rights Fund (NARF); National Education Association (NEA); Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF); and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.

###

Recent Posts


Feb 28, 2024
Infrastructure

Spanberger Leads Virginia Lawmakers in Working to Protect $30 Internet Discount for Virginia Families, Fund Affordable Connectivity Program

The “Affordable Connectivity Program” Right Now Helps More than 455,000 Virginia Households Afford High-Speed Internet WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today led members of the Virginia congressional delegation in a bipartisan effort urging the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations to extend funding for a key discount program that allows more Virginia families to […]



Feb 26, 2024
Womens' Issues

In Wake of Alabama Supreme Court Ruling, Spanberger Joins Bipartisan, Bicameral Effort to Protect Access to IVF

Congresswoman: “This Ruling Sets a Dangerous Precedent” WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today backed bipartisan legislation to protect every American’s right to access in-vitro fertilization (IVF) following the Alabama Supreme Court’s ruling that frozen embryos are children under the law. On February 16, 2024, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos — […]



Spanberger, Valadao Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen U.S. Voting Systems Against Foreign Attacks

U.S. Senate Version is Led by U.S. Senators Mark Warner & Susan Collins WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representatives Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) and David Valadao (R-CA-22) today introduced bipartisan legislation to strengthen the security of U.S. election infrastructure by requiring that voting systems undergo simulated attacks as part of their standard certification process. Given ongoing attempts […]