Two members of the House of Representatives insist the Constitution doesn’t guarantee you the right to vote—and one leading fact-checking group says they may be correct, on a technicality. Mark Pocan, a representative from Wisconsin, has joined with Keith Ellison from Minnesota to introduce a new constitutional amendment in the U.S. House of Representatives that guarantees everyone 18 years and older the right to vote in elections. The folks at PolitiFact, the Pulitzer Prize–winning website in Florida, evaluated Pocan’s statement on the House floor that “nothing in the Constitution explicitly guarantees our right to vote.”
The proposed amendment reads as follows,
“SECTION 1: Every citizen of the United States, who is of legal voting age, shall have the fundamental right to vote in any public election held in the jurisdiction in which the citizen resides.
SECTION 2: Congress shall have the power to enforce and implement this article by appropriate legislation.”
The verdict from PolitiFact: “Whether adding such a guarantee would have much impact is debatable. But Pocan’s narrowly constructed claim is accurately stated.”
In other words, the use of the word “explicitly” in Pocan’s statement may be correct.
PolitiFact checked more than a dozen sources, including constitutional experts from several sides of the political spectrum.
And while there is some agreement that the original wording of the Constitution doesn’t explicitly say there is a right to vote, the intent and the existence of multiple constitutional amendments, as well as court decisions interpreting those amendments, make it clear that people have voting rights.
Full Article: Congressmen: You have no right to vote.