Meet an Arab American Elections Officer

Posted by Maya Chamra on July 02, 2019 in Blog
The process was simple: Nour applied to be a poll worker online and started training immediately. Poll workers are responsible for preparing voting equipment, checking names and IDs of voters, tabulating results, and providing voters with additional assistance.
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Time to Restore the Voting Rights Act

Posted on June 25, 2019 in Press Releases


CONTACT: Tess Waggoner


June 25, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today marks the six-year anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Shelby County v. Holder – a decision that eliminated a core element of the 1965 Voting Rights Act (VRA). The Arab American Institute joins other civil rights organizations and allies to mark June 24-30 as a Shelby Week of Action to push Congress to act to restore the VRA and pass the Voting Rights Advancement Act (VRAA).  

The VRA aimed to protect the rights of American voters, particularly minority voters, from institutional discrimination and disenfranchisement....

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The Damaging Legacy of Shelby v. Holder

Posted by Guest on June 24, 2019 in Blog

Lately, the integrity of our democracy, including the fundamental right to vote, is regularly under fire. The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) plays an integral role in the protection, or lack thereof, of the democratic rights of citizens. Next week, June 25, 2019 marks the anniversary of the landmark Shelby v. Holder Supreme Court decision. Six years later, the decision continues to have a lasting impact on voting rights and the disenfranchisement of voters nationwide.


For almost five decades, the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965 protected the...

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A Narrow Win Against Racial Gerrymandering: Virginia House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill

Posted by Guest on June 19, 2019 in Blog

AAI staff and Spring 2019 interns participated in a rally at the Supreme Court on the day of oral arguments in the case.

On June 17, 2019, the Supreme Court dismissed the case Virginia House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill, in which the Virginia House of Delegates tried to appeal a lower court decision which declared the 2011 Virginia House district maps were unconstitutional as a result of racial gerrymandering. 

This case dates back to 2014, when a group of Virginia voters alleged that the Republican-controlled Virginia...

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Florida's Arab American Community Remains Active in 2019

Posted by Basma Alawee on April 17, 2019 in Blog

March was a busy month for the Arab community in Jacksonville, Florida as residents focused on both the mayoral election and the beginning of the legislative session. 

There were several opportunities for residents to meet the mayoral candidates and ask them questions ahead of the March 19th election. The Arab American community had a strong presence in these spaces. Through the questions posed to the candidates, a few themes became apparent, including public safety and a desire to spend taxpayer money responsibly.  

Some of the questions Jacksonville residents asked include: 

What is your solution to violent crime in our community? 

Would you increase funding for the police department? 

Do you favor...

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Architects of Democracy Convene at Blueprint Conference

Posted by Haley Arata on November 29, 2018 in Blog

By Ibrahim Diallo and Haley Arata

On Tuesday, November 27, the Arab American Institute (AAI) was invited to participate in a panel discussion at Common Cause'sBlueprint for a Great Democracy Conference. The topic, Preparing Election Administration and Election Protection for 2020, was also addressed by speakers from Common Cause, Vote@Home, and the Brennan Center for Justice, who each shared important takeaways from the 2018 midterm elections and strategies for 2020. Elena Nunez, Director of State Operations & Ballot Measure Strategies at Common Cause, moderated the panel discussion, which featured Myrna Perez, Deputy Director of the Democracy Initiative at the...

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