Dear Mark,

We hope you will join us for a panel discussion hosted by the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law to explore how we can best fight back against the ongoing assault on voting rights on Thursday, September 8th at 10 a.m. at Arnold & Porter, 555 Twelfth Street NW, Washington DC 20004.  To RSVP for this event, send an email to info@lawyerscommittee.org.

Following the November 2010 elections many legislatures moved quickly to introduce and pass voter suppression laws arguing that they are necessary to prevent voter fraud and allowing for little or no public debate (for more information see our Map of Shame).  These laws are not a solution, but a problem. [No, “these laws” are HALF “the problem.” Our current voting system is the other half.] They do nothing to prevent voter fraud – instead, they disenfranchise targeted populations, particularly the elderly, minorities, people with disabilities and young voters.

Make no mistake: the current assault on voting rights is far from over. [Do tell.] Reversing the trend will require a comprehensive year-round campaign joined by all those who work to ensure full participation in our democracy that includes:  voter education and empowerment, changing the narrative about the problems plaguing our system of elections and real solutions that will expand access to voting, and where possible challenging these harmful laws in court. [“Empowerment” without paper ballots, and open vote-counts? Good luck with that!]  The Lawyers’ Committee will also continue its year-round leadership of Election Protection to help meet these needs.

Great progress has been made in the last fifty years toward ensuring that every citizen who wants to vote is able to do so. But that progress is imperiled. [You think?] Your involvement is essential to ensuring that we don’t turn back the clock.

We need to work together and engage the larger civil rights community to prevent, stop and undo the damage already done by these harmful voter suppression laws. [And how do we “undo the damage” of a computerized voting system owned and run by private companies?] In Maine and Ohio, citizens are organizing to put a referendum on the ballot to overturn the voter suppression laws passed by their legislatures. We need to replicate these efforts in other states in the near term and work to educate and involve voters in our work, especially ones who have been prevented from registering or voting.

Join us for our action oriented panel discussion on the assault on voting rights. Learn what you can do now in your communities and nationally to help protect the fundamental right to vote for millions of Americans. [I think that you, AND our communities, can do way more to solve this problem than you guys will allow yourselves to see. But it won’t happen if you keep your eyes wide shut.]

The event will be held on Thursday, September 8th at 10am at Arnold & Porter, 555 Twelfth Street NW, Washington DC 20004.  Admission is FREE and open to the public. To RSVP for this event, send an email to info@lawyerscommittee.org

If you can’t make it to our panel in person, the full video and key highlights will be made available on our websites, www.lawyerscommittee.org and www.866OurVote.org




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