Yesterday was the 54th anniversary of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, one of the most significant pieces of legislation for securing the right to vote for all Americans. To mark this occasion, and to bring attention to setbacks in voting rights since the 2013 Shelby County v. Holder U.S. Supreme Court decision, rights advocates around the country gathered to remember the struggles which led to the passage of the Voting Rights Act, and to call on Congress to pass the Voting Rights Advancement Act. AAI was featured at the DC event (we showed up with Yalla Vote shirts and all), joined by organizations such as the League of Women Voters, League of Conservation Voters, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. Speaking at the event, AAI Policy Counsel Ryan J. Suto highlighted how Arab Americans have faced combative government officials and illegal scrutiny when attempting to obtain and submit absentee ballots. Sometimes we get lost in sexier debates around the state of our democracy, but voting rights are the fundamental building blocks of democracy, and we can’t afford to overlook them.

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