Menendez: Voting Rights Act Created More Inclusive America

Menendez: Voting Rights Act Created More Inclusive America

Senator co-sponsors reauthorization of key VRA provisions

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) today released a statement supporting the reauthorization of key Voting Rights Act provisions. Menendez, who is co-sponsoring the Voting Rights Act reauthorization, said this landmark legislation and the provisions that were later incorporated therein set the foundation for a more inclusive democracy and a more diverse United States Congress.

The Voting Rights Act has empowered thousands of communities to elect candidates of choice and has ensured that a full spectrum of voices is heard in our national dialogue. In the pre-VRA world, minority inclusion in the political process was inconceivable. Now it is the VRA that ensures that the elections of people like Senators Barack Obama, Mel Martinez and Ken Salazar are no longer electoral anomalies, but reflections of the will of the communities and states they represent.

The right to vote is so fundamental to our citizenship, so vital, that we as Members of Congress must make every effort to ensure that this right is a reality across the length and breadth of this great nation. The VRA ensures that all American citizens have access to the American political process and a voice in determining their future. That is why the Voting Rights Act remains so desperately needed and why Congress must reauthorize the special provisions that are set to expire in August 2007.

I look forward to working with my colleagues in Congress on both sides of the aisle to protect the voting rights of all Americans.

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