Problems with voting? Call the Election Protection hotline at 866-OUR-VOTE.

WASHINGTONDamon T. Hewitt, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, will testify on March 12 before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee as part of their hearing entitled: “The Right Side of History: Protecting Voting Rights in America.” The hearing will be streamed live starting at 10 AM ET on the committee website here.

Hewitt will testify to the unnecessary obstacles to casting a ballot that Black voters and other voters of color face, and cite examples of voter suppression from many states, including Texas, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and North Dakota. Hewitt will express his support for the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, which was introduced last week. 

In his testimony, Hewitt states: “The reality is that with each successive election cycle, our democracy is increasing in danger. It is no coincidence that so many of the attacks on our democracy have been bolstered by the failure of Congress to restore the full protections of the Voting Rights Act, even as the U.S. Supreme Court continues to hobble its reach and remedies.” 

“The floodgates of voter suppression have been wide open, and the health of our democracy has deteriorated…We went from being protected by the umbrella of the Voting Rights Act’s preclearance regime to being drenched by wave after wave of suppressive actions by state legislatures and courts around the country.”

“The threats to equal access to democracy for voters of color are ever-present and show no signs of diminishing. At the same time, courts are steadily undermining the legal tools available to voters of color facing discriminatory voting laws, in particular Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. Congress must act to restore the key protections of the Voting Rights Act and ensure that it remains viable as a legal defense against voter suppression in perpetuity.”

“In Shelby County, the Court acknowledged that racial discrimination in voting continues to exist and invited Congress to act. That invitation can, and must, be accepted by Congress by passing legislation like the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.”


Read Damon Hewitt’s full testimony here


About the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law – The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to mobilize the nation’s leading lawyers as agents for change in the Civil Rights Movement. Today, the Lawyers’ Committee uses legal advocacy to achieve racial justice, fighting inside and outside the courts to ensure that Black people and other people of color have the voice, opportunity, and power to make the promises of our democracy real. 

About Election Protection: The Lawyers’ Committee convenes the national, nonpartisan Election Protection Coalition, which administers the 866-OUR-VOTE hotline. The coalition works year-round to ensure that all voters have an equal opportunity to vote and have that vote count. Made up of more than 300 local, state, and national partners, Election Protection uses a wide range of tools and activities to protect, advance, and defend the right to vote.