Watch Live: Democrats Hold ‘Voting Rights’ Press Conference

House Democrats are holding a press conference at the Capitol on Tuesday to push for “additional protections” for voting rights ahead of the 2020 election and on the sixth anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court Shelby County v. Holder decision.

Democrats taking part in the press conference House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Reps. Steve Cohen (D-TN), Marc Veasey (D-TX), Terri A. Sewell (D-AL), Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and Judy Chu (D-CA).

Representatives from leftwing groups are also taking part, including Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights; Marcia Johnson-Blanco, co-director of the Voting Rights Project at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law; and Lisa Cylar Barrett, director of policy at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

The Justia law website said of the decision: 

The Court suspended the operation of part of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which required certain state and local governments to get permission from the federal government before changing rules that affect the right to vote or the election process. However, this section will become active again if Congress updates the system for determining which governments fall into this category.

Justia’s summary of the decision, which contradicts the Democrats’ claims about voters rights being in danger, said in part:

Nearly 50 years later, “things have changed dramatically.” Voter turnout and registration rates in covered jurisdictions approach parity; blatantly discriminatory evasions of federal decrees are rare. Minority candidates hold office at unprecedented levels. Congress, if it is to continue to divide the states, must identify jurisdictions to be singled out on a basis that makes sense under current conditions. Data compiled by Congress before reauthorizing the Act did not show anything like the pervasive, rampant discrimination found in covered jurisdictions in 1965. Congress reenacted the formula based on 40-year-old facts with no logical relation to the present day.

The press conference takes place at 1 p.m. EST.

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