WASHINGTON, DC—Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4) issued the following statement today regarding the decision by the Supreme Court of the United States to overturn a portion of the Voting Rights Act. Their ruling guts a key part of the landmark legislation, passed in 1965, to end a century of attempts to block blacks from voting. Today’s decision declared invalid a section of the law that set a formula that determines which states need federal approval to change voting laws.
“It is a sad day in America when voting becomes more difficult. I am deeply disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down parts of the Voting Rights Act. Over the last half century, we have come a long way toward securing the right of every American citizen to cast a ballot, but we’ve seen in our own backyard, as recently as the 2010 and 2012 elections, that access to voting is not equal across racial and economic lines. More—not less—must be done to ensure everyone can exercise this defining act of American citizenship. I hope Congress will come together in a bipartisan way, as it did in 2006 and the many other times this law has been renewed, to ensure all Americans have an equal chance to vote.”