Congresswoman Nikema Williams, Colleagues, Introduce Legislation to Strengthen Election Administration

WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Nikema Williams (GA-05), led the introduction of the Sustaining Our Democracy Act. Co-leading the introduction of this legislation are Representatives Colin Allred (TX-32), Carolyn Bourdeaux (GA-07)Terri Sewell (AL-7), Bobby Scott (VA-03), and Marc Veasey (TX-33). Twenty-three Representatives have co-sponsored the legislation. The Sustaining Our Democracy Act would provide $20 billion in mandatory federal funding over the next decade to help states and local governments support election administration, including by training and recruiting nonpartisan poll workers and election officials and increasing access to voting in underserved communities. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced companion legislation in the Senate. 

Congresswoman Williams, Co-Chair of the Congressional Voting Rights Caucus said: 

“Georgia’s non-partisan election workers are instrumental to free elections. We must keep it that way. Elections and election workers in Georgia are under furious assault by the former President and Republicans who want to silence Black and brown voters. My bill will help hardworking local elections officials have all the resources they need to defend our democracy. With the very soul of the country at sake, there are no two sides to this issue. You are either on the side of democracy or you aren’t.”  

Congressman Allred said: 

“Nothing is more important than the integrity of our democracy, and our election administration should be efficient and free from partisan interference. As a former voting rights attorney, I know that our free and fair elections are what set American democracy apart, and we must protect it. It’s why I am proud to help lead this bill that will invest in election security and help eligible voters cast their ballot.”

Congresswoman Bourdeaux said: 

“Too many communities lack the funding to maintain their election infrastructure, leading to errors that degrade trust in and restrict access to our elections. This legislation ensures local elections boards have predictable and consistent funding. As someone who has seen firsthand how dangerous it can be when election systems fail us, this funding will ensure we don’t face the same breakdowns we experienced across Georgia in 2018 and 2020.”

Congresswoman Sewell said: 

“Over the past two years, extremist politicians have sought to undermine trust in our elections to serve their own craven political ambitions. Across the nation, local election administrators have borne the brunt of this assault which threatens the very fabric of our democracy. By providing a steady stream of funding for election administration, the Sustaining Our Democracy Act would ensure that states and localities have the resources they need to administer free and fair elections. In doing so, it would help restore much-needed trust in the democratic process. As state legislatures continue their assault on the right to vote, enacting federal voting rights legislation continues to be my top priority!”

Congressman Veasey said: 

“With this year’s midterm election cycle already underway, we are reminded how important it is for Congress to provide adequate funding to support both our nation’s electoral system and election officials who ensure the durability and integrity of our democratic process. That is why it is critical we continue investing in our aging voting infrastructure and provide much-needed funding to assist election officials and poll workers. As Co-Chair of the Voting Rights Caucus, I’ll keep supporting reasonable efforts that ensure Americans cast their votes.”

Senator Klobuchar said:

“Free and fair elections are the cornerstone of our democracy, but in recent years we have seen a barrage of threats seeking to undermine our elections. It is critical that we respond to these threats head-on by ensuring that state and local governments have the resources needed to strengthen the administration of our elections, protect election officials on the frontlines, and provide all eligible voters with the opportunity to make their voices heard. From training more election workers to expanding polling places to making it easier for voters to cast ballots early and by mail, this legislation helps provide state and local governments with the funding they need to effectively administer elections and eliminate barriers to voting. I’ll keep fighting to make our democracy work for every American.”

The Sustaining our Democracy Act is endorsed by numerous organizations including: the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, Asian Americans Advancing Justice–AAJC, End Citizens United/Let America Vote, Common Cause, Fair Fight Action, National Action Network, Spread the Vote, Southern Coalition for Social Justice, Asian American Advocacy Fund, Latino Community Fund GA, the Georgia State Conference of the NAACP, and GALEO Impact Fund. 

Karen Hobert Flynn, President of Common Cause said: 

“As some states make it harder for Americans to vote, we must continue to invest in our elections to make sure everyone can have their voices heard and votes counted. However, when our elections are underfunded, local jurisdictions that run our elections have fewer resources to invest in upgrading and maintaining election infrastructure. If not addressed, this can limit the opportunity to cast a ballot. The Sustaining Our Democracy Act would help ensure that state and local election officials can have the tools and resources they need so all Americans can have options to safely and securely vote. We commend Congresswoman Williams for introducing this important bill to strengthen our elections and help ensure that all Americans can have their voices heard and votes counted.”

Gerald Griggs, President of the Georgia State Conference of NAACP said:

“The Georgia NAACP has been fighting to protect voting rights and access for over 100 years. We are dedicated to ensuring full access to the franchise for all citizens, especially minority voters. Any legislation that seeks to provide greater access to equitable voting will be supported by the Georgia State Conference of NAACP. This bill will provide resources to each State to accomplish the goal of greater equitable access to voting, therefore the Georgia State Conference supports the bill. It will make voting easier and more accessible in Georgia.” 

Click here for the text of the Sustaining our Democracy Act.  

CONTACT: PressGA05@mail.house.gov 

Congresswoman Nikema Williams proudly serves Georgia’s Fifth Congressional District. Congresswoman Williams serves on the exclusive Financial Services Committee where she is Vice Chair of the Oversight and Investigations subcommittee, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and the Select Committee for the Modernization of Congress. She is Freshman Class President and Co-Chairs the Congressional Voting Rights Caucus. Congresswoman Williams builds on the Fifth District’s legacy as the cradle of the civil rights movement as a champion of voting rights, closing the racial wealth gap, and ensuring the promise of America for all–regardless of their ZIP code or bank account.

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