PROTECTING VOTING RIGHTS & BUILDING FAIR COURTS
Our democracy should be of the people, by the people, and for the people. But, thanks to years of gerrymandering, partisan gridlock, and the sharp increase in extremist conservative activism within the courts, that democracy is now of, by, and for the wealthy and the powerful few. A sound democracy is key to building progressive change and policies that support gender justice.
We must demand that our democratic systems are legitimate, elected leaders are held accountable, and voters are heard on how our communities are governed. We can do this by electing leaders who are committed to passing laws that will ensure everyone across the country has equal access to register to vote, cast a ballot, and then have that ballot counted fairly. We need lawmakers who will promote the integrity of our elections instead of cheating the system by limiting access to the ballot and picking and choosing whose votes matter and when.
And it isn’t just lawmakers we need to keep accountable—it’s judges too. We elect the president and senators who appoint and confirm judges and justices for lifetime appointments on the courts, which are meant to ensure equal justice and protect fundamental civil and constitutional rights for all. We must use the power of our votes to reshape our courts so that our judges and justices support equal rights under the law for all, especially for women, families, and people of color.
Politicians and lawmakers need to prioritize strengthening our democratic infrastructure and our courts to create a level playing field, restore fundamental protections and civil rights, and prevent future threats to our democratic systems.
Policies candidates & lawmakers should support:
1.Protect and expand access to the ballot and restore the Voting Rights Act, including by passing the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.
2.Unrig our democracy by abolishing the filibuster, an old U.S. Senate rule that has been used for decades to block critical civil rights, including voting rights, and gun safety legislation.
3.Reshape the makeup of our federal judiciary by nominating and confirming judges with a strong record of supporting gender and racial justice issues and who affirmatively declare they will uphold equality, opportunity for all, individual liberty, and the freedom to make personal decisions about our bodies and relationships.
4.Mandate a code of ethics for Supreme Court justices in line with the ethical code for lower court judges to ensure justices are impartial, independent, and can be held accountable.
Questions to ask federal candidates:
1.What policies will you support to ensure that all eligible voters have equal access to register to vote, cast a ballot, and have that ballot counted fairly?
2.For congressional candidates: Have you endorsed the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act? If not (because you are not an incumbent), will you commit to endorsing and passing the John Lewis Voting Rights Act during its next introduction and other efforts to fully restore the Voting Rights Act?
3.How will you ensure that you recommend candidates for federal judgeships who are committed to equality, freedom, opportunity for all, and individual liberty and rights that uphold individuals’ abilities to make personal decisions about their bodies and relationships?
4.Have you recommended candidates to the White House and/or supported judicial nominees with a strong record on civil rights and gender justice? If not (because you are not an incumbent), will you commit to recommending and supporting judicial nominees with a strong record on civil rights and gender justice?
5.How will you hold federal judges accountable who do not adhere to constitutional norms and the rule of law?