The Struggle Over Voting Rights

voting rights
Every U.S. citizen 18 years old or older on election day is eligible to vote. Why are some states changing voting laws?

Across the United States, people are struggling over a big issue—voting. The United States has laws about protecting the right to vote, but voting laws vary from state to state. Some states are passing laws that would make voting more accessible, meaning it would be easier to vote. Elected officials in other states are making laws that they say will make voting more secure. In the past, some laws in the United States prevented groups such as African Americans from voting. People worry these new laws will again deny some Americans the right to vote.

What are the reasons behind these new laws? After the 2020 election, some people claimed that there was fraud, meaning that some people voted illegally. People who believe that there was fraud want to make voting more secure. Many courts and officials reviewed claims of fraud and found no evidence of widespread fraud. Voter fraud has been studied many times and the conclusion is that it happens very rarely. Some states are still changing their laws. They say they want people to believe their election results are fair.

How could voter security measures make it harder to vote? One security measure is to make it more difficult to register, or sign up, to vote.  Critics point out, though, that if it’s harder to register to vote, fewer people will vote. Some voter laws limit where people can vote. If people live far away from a voting place and don’t have transportation, that means they may not be able to vote in elections.

Others believed that it was difficult for some people to vote in 2020. There weren’t enough polling places, for example, or there were long lines. Some states have mail-in ballots, which make it easier to vote. Some states have made it easier to get mail-in ballots. A new law in Kentucky, for example, allows voters to vote earlier by mail and to request mail-in ballots online. Some politicians and officials think that mail-in ballots can be faked. So politicians in some states have made it harder to get a mail-in ballot.

Some companies don’t like the laws that are making it harder to vote and have spoken out against them. Major League Baseball, for example, changed the location of their All-Star game to protest stricter voting laws in Georgia.

What Do You Think? Do you think it should be easy to vote? Why or why not?

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