Promote the Vote, Protect the Vote
NCJW is proud to partner
Voting is the cornerstone of our democracy. That’s why, for decades, NCJW advocates have fought for the expansion of voting rights, advocating for women’s suffrage, the historic Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Help America Vote Act of 1992, and more.
Today, NCJW’s work to promote civic engagement takes the form of Promote the Vote, Protect the Vote. This exciting initiative mobilizes NCJW sections, members, and supporters to work, in accordance with the rules governing 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations, to ensure that all eligible voters are able to vote and that every vote is counted.
Voting Rights Today
In recent years, many states have made repeated attempts to curb voting rights with laws that make requirements for voting unnecessarily burdensome. Although Congress reauthorized the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965 in 2006 with tremendous bipartisan support, the 2013 Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v. Holder gutted a key provision of the law. Before the Shelby County decision, certain states and jurisdictions had to report any voting law changes to the Department of Justice (DOJ) prior to implementation, a requirement called preclearance. Despite the VRA’s record of success in preventing discriminatory voting practices, the Supreme Court ruled that the law used an inappropriate method or formula to determine which states required federal oversight. As a result, preclearance still exists but does not have a formula for application to any states or jurisdictions.
NCJW continues to oppose any effort to erode voting rights and advocates for a legislative fix to repair the damage done to the Voting Rights Act by the Shelby County decision.
NCJW supports the bipartisan Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2014 (VRAA, S 1945/HR 3899), introduced in in January 2014 in response to the Shelby County decision, by Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) in the House and by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) in the Senate. This legislation offers a modern, flexible, and forward-looking set of protections that work together to ensure an effective response to racial discrimination in voting in every part of the country.
New Resources: Learn more about current threats to voting rights and the protections offered by the VRAA by listening to a recording of NCJW’s distance learning call, “The Right to Vote, the Power to Decide,” and reviewing NCJW’s VRAA talking points. Visit my.ncjw.org/vote for additional resources.
Promote the Vote, Protect the Vote 2012
Thanks to NCJW’s dedication to voter education and mobilization efforts, both independently and through collaboration with community partners, the turnout for the 2012 election was impressive. Through NCJW’s Promote the Vote, Protect the Vote 2012 initiative, NCJW sections and members registered new voters; educated the community about ballot initiatives and voting rights; and provided the resources eligible voters needed to cast their ballot. Their efforts in communities across the nation made a difference!
We’re particularly proud of NCJW sections’ work on ballot initiatives. From California to Florida, from Maine to Washington State, NCJW leaders educated and mobilized voters on critical issues. The successes are many. NCJW applauds results on state ballot questions and celebrates marriage equality wins in four states.
Click here to access the Promote the Vote, Protect the Vote 2012 Resource Guide archive.
Join us! For decades, NCJW advocates have fought to improve the lives of women, children and families, and we pledge to continue our work to advance a progressive agenda over the next four years and beyond. Please join us in this pledge – there is no better time to renew your commitment. Sign NCJW’s Pledge for Social Action today!