DearColleague.us

Letter

From: The Honorable Rick Larsen
Sent By: terra.sabag@mail.house.gov
Bill: H.R. 3364
Date: 7/30/2015

Instead of Looking For Ways to Keep People From Voting, We Should be Looking for Ways to Break Down Barriers

Current cosponsors include: Beatty, Sanford Bishop, Blumenauer, Bordallo, Cartwright, Chu, Clay, Clyburn, Cohen, Cummings, Danny K. Davis, DeGette, DelBene, Deutch, Ellison, Etsy, Farr, Hahn, Denny Heck, Himes, Israel, Jackson Lee, Hank Johnson, Kilmer, Sean Patrick Maloney, McDermott, McGovern, Meeks, Norton, Richmond, Bobby Rush, Adam Smith, Titus, Torres, Tsongas,

Dear Colleague,

State legislatures across the country continue to pass restrictive voting laws that disenfranchise citizens, including voter ID laws. As of March 2015, two-thirds of states had passed laws requiring some kind of identification from people at the polls. Requiring an ID may not seem like a problem at first glance, but these laws put up barriers for some potential voters. Not all people drive or fly internationally. And some cannot afford the cost of a state ID or take the time off of work to get it.

According to a GAO study from last fall, voter ID laws have a disproportionately negatively impact on African Americans. In some states, fewer African Americans have the ID needed to vote, and these laws discourage African Americans from going to the polls at all. Laws requiring an ID to vote also create barriers for other minorities, the elderly, college students, and transgendered individuals.

To break down barriers people face to cast their ballot, I encourage you to join me in supporting the America Votes Act of 2015.

The America Votes Act will allow voters arriving at the polls without the identification required by their state to submit a sworn, written statement affirming their identity, just as absentee voters do with their ballots. These voters will then be allowed to submit a standard, not provisional ballot. This straightforward bill strengthens our democratic process by protecting voting rights in America.

If you have any questions or would like to be an original cosponsor, please contact Terra Sabag of my staff at terra.sabag@mail.house.gov or at 225-2605.

Sincerely,
/s
Rick Larsen
Member of Congress