voice for democracy

Letter: Government undermining democracy | Letters | roanoke.com – Roanoke Times

It’s ironic that the federal government will spend trillions of dollars and thousands of lives trying to establish democracy in unlikely places (Afghanistan and Iraq) while the states systematically undermine and threaten democracy in the United States. The states are joined by some members of Congress.
Voter-suppression laws make voting difficult by such measures as eliminating polling places and limiting early voting options.
Intensely partisan gerrymandering ensures that legislators remain in power rather than allowing citizens to choose their representatives.
These actions silence the voices of voters. Restoring all the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (the John Lewis Voting Rights Act) or passing the For the People Act would offer voting protections nationally, but many partisans in Congress would rather manipulate votes for their own aims than give people choices.
The General Assembly of Virginia passed laws in 2020 that changed the state from one of the hardest in which to vote to one more in line with states that value the votes of the people.
We voted for a constitutional amendment to establish a bipartisan commission to draw district lines to mitigate partisan gerrymandering.
These moves protect democracy by treating all citizens as equal and by giving them a fair chance to vote.
But congressmen from this region — Morgan Griffith, Ben Cline, Bob Good — all voted in 2020 to reject the results of a free and fair presidential election. The actions of Griffith, Cline, and Good reflect hyperpartisanship rather than respect for voters or respect for the laws and Constitution of this country.
The will to undermine democracy in this state and nation is clear among these elected representatives. Virginia voting laws and other protections of citizens could change depending on whom the people elect to the General Assembly and top state offices Nov. 2. Depending on these choices, Virginia could continue toward a more perfect democracy or become another Texas, Florida, Georgia or Arizona.
If you value your vote and value democracy, please vote thoughtfully this fall.
Carolyn Rude, Blacksburg
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