People For the American Way is one of the nation’s leading advocates on voting rights including solutions to voter suppression and intimidation tactics, and federal election reform.
Kathryn Kolbert is President of People For the American Way and People For Foundation. Recognized repeatedly by The National Law Journal as one of the “100 Most Influential Lawyers in America,” she oversees all of People For’s programs, including its Democracy Campaign for electoral reform, which advocates for progressive federal and state voting rights legislation.
Tanya Clay House, Director of Public Policy and Director of the Democracy Campaign at People For the American Way and People For Foundation, can speak on voter suppression and intimidation tactics employed during the 2008 election cycle and voter ID laws across the country, and how they impact voters on Election Day. Mrs. House has testified on voting rights legislation and related issues before Congress including Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s Ballot Integrity Act and Rep. Holt’s voting machines legislation.
In 2004, our affiliate People For the American Way Foundation conducted Election Protection operations with its allies in 17 states, and held post-election forums with coalition allies to investigate systemic problems. Since 2004, People For the American Way has been on the front lines advocating for federal legislation to combat the problems voters faced during the 2004 presidential elections. In 2008, People For Foundation has been working vigorously again to train, mobilize and educate voters across the country, particularly on their voter ID laws.
The organization worked with Sen. Barack Obama’s staff to draft the Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimidation Act of 2007, which was passed in the House of Representatives. The legislation makes deceptive practices a felony with a fine as much as $250,000 and five years in prison, and increases the prison sentence for voter intimidation to five years. People For has also worked with state legislators in Virginia, Minnesota California, Ohio, and Texas on the introduction of similar legislation, and legislation was passed in Virginia and Minnesota. People For worked with Senator Hillary Clinton to draft comprehensive election reform legislation and Congressman Rush Holt’s staff in drafting legislation that would ban inaccessible paperless voting machines and require voter-verified paper ballots for every voter in the country.
To find examples of the kind of voter intimidation and suppression tactics PFAW Foundation has tracked in the past, see our reports The Long Shadow of Jim Crow and The New Face of Jim Crow. To view some of the voter ID materials, visit www.PFAW.org.
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