Rep. John Lewis On The Voting Rights Advancement Act
"I want to thank my friends and colleagues in the Senate: Senators Durbin, Coons and especially Senator Leahy and his staff for coming forth with a piece of legislation to repair and correct the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in the Shelby County v. Holder case. I want to thank the representatives of the Tri-Caucuses -- Reps. Sewell, Sanchez, and Chu--for spearheading this effort in the House.
"The vote is precious, almost sacred. It is the most powerful non-violent tool we have in a democracy. There is no other work more important in this or any Congress than protecting the full access of all Americans to the democratic process. We should make it simple and easy for people to make their voices heard in our society.
"If it was not clear in 2014, I think it is clear today that we have come a great distance in this country toward healing the divisions and problems among us, but we are not there yet. This legislation acknowledges that we still have much more work to do, but we have come too far, and we have made too much progress to stop now.
"I support this legislation and hope that this Congress will do what is right by the people of this nation and pass the voting rights legislation that restores justice, dignity, and equal access to the ballot box in America."