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Newhouse Protects Voting Rights, Fights Back Against Democrats’ Unconstitutional Power Grab

August 24, 2021
Press Release
H.R. 4 would infringe upon states’ rights to protect voter integrity

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA) released the following statement in advance of voting against H.R. 4. This unprecedented power grab would nationalize elections and give the Biden Administration authority to veto states’ voter identification laws, essentially removing states’ control over their elections process in direct opposition to the U.S. Constitution.

“The right to vote is fundamental to our democracy, and I firmly believe in protecting this right for all Americans. Unfortunately, the Democrats are more concerned with eroding states’ rights than ensuring free and fair elections,” said Rep. Newhouse. “This ‘voting rights’ legislation is yet another effort to nationalize elections by subjecting every state and locality across the country to heavy-handed federal oversight. I reject this legislation because it is antithetical to our very nature of government, and I will vote to protect our states’ rights against the Biden Administration’s latest unconstitutional power grab.”

Background:

  • Voting discrimination remains against the law and Sections 2 and 3 of the VRA prohibit voting discrimination and allow federal courts to place preclearance requirements on discrimination jurisdictions. 
  • This legislation is not a response to discrimination in voting, but yet another effort to nationalize elections by subjecting every state and locality across the country to heavy-handed federal oversight even when no racially discriminatory treatment has occurred. 
  • H.R.4 turns the Attorney General into an Elections Czar, an unelected, unaccountable bureaucrat under control of the President and in charge of all voting across the country.
  • The overly broad preclearance formula in the bill would subject election jurisdictions to preclearance based on an arbitrary number of strikes over a period of 25 years even if they are not based on actual discriminatory practices.
  • Just like H.R. 1, H.R. 4 also attempts to destroy state photo voter ID and voter roll accuracy laws by treating them as suspect and presuming they are discriminatory attempts to suppress minority votes.
  • States could now be subject to preclearance for implementing new voter laws even if identical non-discriminatory laws are in place in another state.

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