Kansas City Congressman Cleaver Stands Up For Student Voting Rights
TKC NOTE: An important effort from our Kansas City Congressman . . .
Cleaver Protects Voting Rights, Students’ Access to Polls
Today Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II introduced the EASY (Equal Access to Support Youth) Voting Act. This legislation will allow a student to vote in a federal election using their current student photo identification. The bill will also make it a federal crime for any individual to purposely discourage a student from voting by providing false or misleading information.
“Voting is a fundamental right, and we as representatives of the people should encourage and embrace the participation of all eligible citizens,” said Congressman Cleaver. “The integrity of our political process must be, above all, beyond reproach. Make no mistake, our nation’s strength and spirit springs from our enduring commitment to a fair, accessible democratic process. At a time when voting rights have been restricted and constricted cross country, the EASY Voting Act is one way we can protect and promote political participation.”
Students make up an integral part of the American electorate. However, across the country, state legislatures have been proposing laws targeting college students.
*11% of Americans do not have current government issued photo identification.
*18% of Americans between the ages of 18-24 lack current government issued photo ID.
There is little evidence of the occurrence of voter fraud, and instead of protecting our electoral system, photo identification laws do far more harm than good by disproportionately preventing one of our most vulnerable communities from voting – students.
*The 26th amendment expanded our electorate by reducing the voting age from 21 to 18.
*Students should be encouraged to vote, not misled, confused, or outright barred from voting.