Today marks the 40th anniversary of the ratification of the 26th Amendment, a landmark achievement in our nation’s history that gave young Americans 18 and older the right to vote.
But this momentous occasion comes at a time when this right has come under assault, as lawmakers in states across the country push highly-restrictive voter ID laws that have the potential to disenfranchise countless Americans young and old.
These laws are a solution in search of a problem. Instead of protecting the integrity of our voting system, they can effectively drown out the voices of thousands of law-abiding, taxpaying American citizens.
Voting is integral to the strength of our democracy, and we should work to affirm this right, not keep people from making their voices heard.
This is why I sent a letter, signed by 15 of my Senate colleagues, urging United States Attorney General Eric Holder to carefully review voter ID requirements that have been passed or are currently under consideration by state legislatures.
These measures have the potential to block millions of eligible American voters – students, racial minorities and senior citizens – without addressing any real or underlying problem.
We must do everything we can to preserve the integrity of our voting system and our democracy. The individual right to vote is a cornerstone of our democracy. It empowers individual voices that can otherwise be drowned out by special interests.
So as we celebrate the ratification of the 26th Amendment, only a day after marking the independence of our nation, we must also reaffirm our commitment to uphold the right to vote.
Countless Americans before us have fought for this right; they have struggled and toiled so that future generations could have their rightful say in our democracy. Let’s live up to their example, and work together to reaffirm the right to vote.
Full Article: The Right to Vote « Rock the Vote Blog.