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NCC urges Congress to renew Voting Rights Act of 1965 

Washington, May 5, 2006 – A Congressional move to renew expiring provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 has been warmly endorsed by the National Council of Churches USA. 

“By promptly passing this legislation,” the NCC said in a statement released today, “Congress will insure the protection of one of the most basic rights of a free, democratic society—the right to vote.” 

The legislation, introduced in the House and Senate Judiciary Committees, is named for Civil Rights icons Fannie Lou Hamer, Rosa Parks and Coretta  Scott King  

“This is not the time for Congress to begin to dilute voting rights,” the NCC statement said, noting that discriminatory practices continue to hinder people from casting their ballots, especially racial, ethnic and language minorities, and this legislation will help protect the voting rights of all Americans. 

The full text of the statement is below: 

The National Council of Churches USA applauds the House and Senate Judiciary Committees for the introduction of the Fannie Lou Hamer, Rosa Parks and Coretta Scott King Voting Rights Reauthorization and Amendments Act of 2006 (H.R. 9/S. 2703), which will renew and restore expiring provisions of the law that has protected the fundamental rights of all Americans to vote for decades.  

In the spirit of Fannie Lou Hamer, Rosa Parks and Coretta Scott King, three Christian women of deep and abiding faith who worked tirelessly to guarantee that no American would have their civil or human rights violated; we strongly urge Members of Congress to pass this legislation without delay.  

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was groundbreaking legislation that is considered the most effective civil rights legislation in our history. It represents for us a moment when American democracy was at its best and every citizen was finally allowed to fully participate in our society regardless of the color of their skin. 

As Christians, principles of justice and righteousness are foundational principles of our faith. We believe that all people have human worth and dignity. Discriminating against people through policies or practices that deny them their right to vote is unjust and immoral. Although strides have been made to eliminate discrimination, disparity and inequality continue to plague our society, especially for racial, ethnic and language minorities. This is not the time for Congress to begin to dilute voting rights when we know that discriminatory practices persist in hindering Americans trying to cast their ballots.  

By promptly passing this legislation, Congress will insure the protection of one of the most basic rights of a free, democratic society—the right to vote.


Contact NCC News, Leslie Tune, 202-544-2350

 

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