Letter to House Majority Leader Boehner Accompanying Petition to Renew the Voting Rights Act

July 12, 2006

Honorable John A. Boehner

Majority Leader

U.S. House of Representatives

Washington, DC

Dear Leader Boehner:

Common Cause strongly supports passage of H.R. 9, legislation renewing and restoring the Voting Rights Act. We urge the House to pass H.R. 9 without amendment.

We have enclosed a petition signed by 10,000 Americans expressing strong support for H.R. 9. The petition says, in part: "We urge Congress to protect minority voting rights and prevent a return to past discrimination by immediately passing legislation renewing and restoring the Voting Rights Act."

We know the House leadership has supported the legislation, and we appreciate that support. We hope that you will bring the legislation to a vote on the floor on July 13, as now scheduled, and work to ensure its passage without amendment.

This is an historic moment for the House of Representatives. Four decades ago, the modern civil rights movement began to break established patterns of voter disenfranchisement. Activists persuaded Congress and President Lyndon B. Johnson to enact the Voting Rights Act of 1965; since that time, this law has played a major role in protecting the voting rights of all Americans. Many credit the act as the most effective civil rights bill enacted in American history.

Common Cause has been a longtime supporter of the Voting Rights Act as a way to strengthen democracy by improving citizens' access to the ballot. We urge you to work to ensure that this vital civil rights law continues to protect American voters.


Chellie Pingree


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