With the presidential election now fewer than 100 days away, courthouses across the country are continuing to process a record flood of litigation hoping to improve access to voting during the coronavirus pandemic.
This week legal actions were filed in New York to extend the deadline for registration, and in both Virginia and North Carolina to improve the ability of blind citizens to vote from home.
Success for any of those lawsuits would likely increase turnout, but the only place where the extra voters might prove dispositive is North Carolina, where both the presidential and Senate contests look to be tossups. The other two states seem solidly blue.
These are the details of the cases:
A growing chorus of congressional Democrats are saying that enacting a new Voting Rights Act is the best way for Congress to honor John Lewis, the civil rights icon and veteran Atlanta congressman who died last week.
The Republicans running the Senate have signaled no interest in debating the bill, designed to revive the racial discrimination protections enshrined in the original 1965 landmark law. The Democratic House passed the measure in December, with Lewis wielding the gavel during the vote.
Many of his colleagues now say the measure should be dubbed the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Act. There's talk of pushing it through the House a second time this summer, perhaps with election assistance aid to the states tacked on.
Brian Cannon has been pursuing a singular goal for five and a half years as executive director of One Virginia, growing its roster of supporters from 3,500 to more than 100,000. And in November the people of Virginia look ready to reward his work: Approval looks likely for a ballot measure creating an independent commission to draw Virginia's legislative and congressional boundaries — joining 13 other states in taking such work away from politicians who would otherwise be able to pick their own voters. Cannon came to the work after winning a statewide redistricting contest in law school, although after graduating he spent a few years as a startup business consultant. His answers have been edited for clarity and length.
What's the tweet-length description of your organization?
@1VA2021 is a trans-partisan good govt org focused on ending gerrymandering in Virginia. We believe that voting districts belong to Virginians, not to any party or politician.
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