ACLU Statement on Biden’s Voting Rights Executive Order
WASHINGTON — President Biden issued a voting rights executive order today, largely adopting the American Civil Liberties Union’s recommendations on how his administration can protect the right to vote, including improvements to Vote.gov and the voter registration process and ensuring access to the ballot for eligible voters in federal custody and voters with disabilities, in the military, and overseas.
The following is a statement from Sonia Gill, senior legislative counsel for the ACLU:
“President Biden’s executive order is a bold step forward to protect and defend the right to vote and to ensure the federal government takes on the responsibility to maximize voter registration and civic participation. Our government should take every possible action to provide all its people with the unobstructed opportunity to register to vote and participate in our democracy freely and fairly.
“Since the founding of our democracy, Black, Hispanic, and Native American voters have faced systemic barriers to voting and have had to overcome official efforts to block them from casting their ballots. Maximizing voter registration opportunities and civic participation is a critical tool to overcome these structural barriers.
“The administration should take all the necessary actions to ensure that federal agencies provide National Voter Registration Act voter registration services. The National Voter Registration Act creates proven, well established methods of providing voter registration to underrepresented populations, and the Biden administration should take full advantage of these proven methods when expanding voter registration opportunities provided by federal agencies.
“In addition to increasing the federal government’s direct role in administering voter services, the executive order directs agencies to use their existing resources to advance the voting rights of voters who face longstanding barriers to the ballot box: people with disabilities, eligible or soon to be eligible voters who are federally incarcerated, and military and overseas voters. Our government should take every possible action to provide all its people with the unobstructed opportunity to register to vote and participate in our democracy freely and fairly.
“The time is now to chart a new path forward to ensure access to the ballot for all eligible Americans.”
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