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Virtual Screening and Conversation: 'John Lewis: Good Trouble'

Organizer: VoteRiders

Join in making some "good trouble" to honor the legacy of Rep. John Lewis with action on the 55th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act.

Never before has this country needed to hear the powerful voice of Mr. Lewis more. With his unwavering strength, relentless optimism, and indomitable spirit, he has gifted us with clear marching orders and a blueprint for saving our democracy. We hope you will join VoteRiders and some very special guests for a lively conversation about how we can make his vision a reality, and ensure that no one is stripped of their right to vote in 2020.

Location: Virtual

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Alabama photo ID requirement for voters upheld by federal appeals court

Alabama's strict photo identification law is not racially discriminatory and can remain in force, a divided federal appeals court has ruled.

The decision is the latest courthouse development in a state with one of the highest volumes of voting rights disputes. The pace has accelerated because of the view that already restrictive election rules will amplify voter suppression during the coronavirus pandemic — concern that just this week prompted the Republican elections chief to allow anyone to vote by mail this fall.

The case, decided 2-1 on Tuesday by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, predates the arrival of Covid-19 but nonetheless reflects the currently familiar narrative: Civil rights groups challenge a law on the grounds it violates the electorate's political rights under the Voting Rights Act and the Constitution, and the state defends the statute as necessary to prevent election fraud.

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The 11 states that would face federal oversight under a new Voting Rights Act

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.

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Voting
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Because the Supreme Court stripped the "preclearance" section of the Voting Rights Act in 2013, states must enact their own laws to protect the rights of communities of color, according to Greenwood and Norouzi.

Why it's time for every state to enact its own voting rights law

Greenwood is co-director for voting rights and redistricting at the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center. Norouzi is deputy director of OneAmerica, an immigrant and refugee advocacy organization in Washington state.

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