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The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights  & The Leadership Conference Education Fund
The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

Press Release - The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Press Call: Southern Voters and Advocates Discuss Real Need for the Voting Rights Act
Monday, Feb. 25 at 10:30 AM EST/9:30 AM CST, Two Days before Supreme Court Arguments in Shelby County v. Holder and Voting Rights Rally

For Immediate Release
Contact: Scott Simpson, 202.466.2061, simpson@civilrights.org
February 22, 2013

Here's an MP3 of of this call: http://www.civilrightsdocs.info/audio/press-calls/VRASouthPressCall.mp3

WASHINGTON, DC – On Monday, February 25 at 10:30 AM/9:30 AM CST, legal experts, civil rights leaders and an impacted voter will hold a conference call about the real and continuing need for the Voting Rights Act (VRA) to protect voters in covered jurisdictions in the South. This call is the third in a series of regionally focused press briefings on the importance of this landmark law for voters around the country.  Prior briefings have addressed protecting voting rights in Texas and in Indian Country.

The briefing will occur just two days before the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in Shelby County v. Holder, a case challenging the constitutionality of Section 5 of the VRA. Civil rights leaders, Members of Congress, activists, students and advocates from all over the country plan to rally at the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court during the argument in support of voting rights (see more information at http://www.protectthevra.org/ and http://www.todaynvr.com/).

The challenge to Section 5 of the VRA has far-reaching implications for the law’s ability to protect voters in covered areas throughout the country, and in jurisdictions in the South in particular. For voters in southern states covered by Section 5, these protections have been vital for generations and are still crucial today. New videos show examples of the recent attempts to discriminate against voters based on race that were stopped by Section 5 in South Carolina and Alabama before the 2012 election.

Nationally, the Voting Rights Act was used to reject more than 1,000 proposed discriminatory voting changes between 1982 and 2006. In addition, hundreds of voting changes were withdrawn by covered jurisdictions after an initial request for more information from the Department of Justice.

CALL DETAILS:

WHO:

  • Wade Henderson, President and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and a key organizer of the rally outside the Supreme Court on February 27
  • Ryan Haygood, Director of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund’s Political Participation Group
  • Calvin Henderson, a voter from Pitt County, NC whose rights were protected by Section 5 in 2012
  • Alabama State Senator Hank Sanders, a key organizer of the 2013 Freedom Rides for Voting Rights

WHAT: Press call on why Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act is vital to voters in the South in advance of Supreme Court argument and rally in landmark case

WHEN: Monday, February 25 at 10:30 AM EST/9:30 AM CST

CALL-IN INFO: 866-952-1907, Verbal Passcode: “VRA”

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