OAKLAND – California Attorney General Rob Bonta joined a coalition of 22 attorney general today calling on Congress to take immediate action to protect voting rights and our democracy. Today’s action comes after the 2020 presidential election, in which the then-incumbent president, backed by certain elected officials, took steps to directly undermine the election. In a letter to Congress, the coalition calls on lawmakers to act immediately – including reforming the filibuster if necessary – to pass federal laws that protect against both voter suppression and electoral subversion.
“The right to vote is a central pillar of our democracy,” said Attorney General Bonta. “Instead of strengthening these rights, several states across the country have passed laws that create new electoral barriers or make it easier to cancel election results. These actions are a threat to the integrity of our general election. Now is a critical time for both our nation’s history and our democracy. We must answer the call to action. Congress must pass laws to prevent the suppression of voters and the subversion of elections. “
Instead of opposing the ill-conceived, damaging attempts by the former president to challenge the 2020 presidential election results, which directly contributed to the unprecedented January 6 uprising in the U.S. Capitol, numerous elected officials across the country have instead taken steps to do so Promote efforts to undermine free and fair elections. Several states have already passed laws that create new electoral barriers or make it easier to overturn election results, often based on misinformation and flimsy allegations that failed in courts across the country. While this concerted attack on democracy continues, the need for federal legislation to fill loopholes in existing legal protections is more important than ever.
Today’s letter to Congress follows an earlier call for action from Attorney General Bonta calling on state decision-makers and criminal justice leaders across the country to oppose the restrictions on franchise that are being considered and enacted by a number of state lawmakers. A copy of this statement is available here.
With today’s letter, Attorney General Bonta joins attorneys general of Wisconsin, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and the District of Columbia.
A copy of today’s letter can be found here.