As Texas Legislature Moves Forward with Restrictive Voting Bill, Allred Votes to Restore Key Safeguards in Voting Rights Act

August 24, 2021
Press Release

Washington, D.C. –  Congressman Colin Allred (TX-32) today voted for H.R. 4, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, to restore key provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 which were gutted by the Supreme Court in the Shelby County v. Holder and Brnovich v. DNC rulings. The bill develops a process to determine which states and localities with a recent history of voting rights violations over the last 25 years must preclear election changes with the Department of Justice, establishes nation-wide preclearance for certain voting changes and codifies the pre-Brnovich standard for Section 2 cases. 

“I was leading voter protection efforts in Texas when the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act in 2013 and have litigated under the Voting Rights Act so I know how critical restoring these provisions is to ensuring every American has their voice heard in our democracy,” said Allred. “I was proud to vote for this bill to restore critical safeguards in the Voting Rights Act. Our democracy is at an inflection point and I’ll keep working to shore up our democracy by passing additional legislation that expands voting access and protects against election subversion.”

Allred is an original cosponsor of the measure.

The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act:

  • Creates a new preclearance coverage formula that applies to states and localities with repeated voting rights violations in the last 25 years,
  • Applies a nation-wide preclearance requirement when jurisdictions enact voting changes based on measures that have historically been used to discriminate against voters, like photo ID laws.
  • Amends Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act to address the Supreme Court’s decision in Brnovich v. DNC, eliminating the heightened standard created by the ruling and codifying the standard previously used.
  • Allows federal courts to immediately halt questionable voting practices until a final ruling is made and includes a retrogression standard for already-enacted but not-yet-implemented measures.
  • Requires reasonable public notice for voting changes.
  • Establishes a grant program for small jurisdictions to help them comply with the bill’s various notice requirements.