Statement by New Virginia Majority on Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s Plan to Improve Ethics Reform and Expand Voter Access

For Immediate Release

January 10, 2017

 

New Virginia Majority applauds Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s good government agenda for 2017 legislative session which seeks to strengthen Virginia’s ethics rules and expand and protect voter access for people across the Commonwealth.

The agenda includes the following:

  • Legislation to ban personal use of campaign funds

  • Repeal of SB 1256 to end the regressive photo ID requirement for voters

  • End barriers to absentee voting, including expanding access and eligibility to voters without transportation, caregivers, parents of young children, elderly, and rural voters

“The repeal of SB 1256 and expanded absentee voting gives more Virginians the chance to participate in democracy,” said New Virginia Majority co-executive director Tram Nguyen. “It ensures that citizens who have job conflicts, travel, childcare, or transportation challenges are still able to have their voices heard and their votes counted.”

Our democracy is strongest when everyone can participate.Prioritizing good governance and ethics, and a robust expansion of voter access are key components of a healthy democracy. Maintaining gratuitous barriers to voting, such as regressive photo ID laws, laws against absentee voting, and laws against early voting seek to limit access to the ballot. Those who oppose voter access oppose democracy.

Contact: press@newvirginiamajority.org, (571) 208-2784

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New Virginia Majorityorganizes for progressive transformation of Virginia through mass organizing of communities of color, women, working people, LGBT communities, and youth to create a Virginia that is democratic, just and sustainable.


New Virginia Majority applauds order to extend voter registration deadline

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday October 20, 2016

New Virginia Majority applauds order to extend voter registration deadline 

“We’re pleased with today’s order to extend Virginia’s voter registration deadline to ensure every eligible Virginian who wants to register to vote is able,” said New Virginia Majority co-executive director Tram Nguyen. “The right to vote is at the heart of what it means to be an American. For thousands of Virginians who recently had their right to vote restored, this order means they will have a voice in November, many for the first time. That’s something we can all be proud of.”

 

Under the order, eligible Virginia voters have until 11:59 p.m. on Friday, October 21st to submit their voter registration application. All eligible Virginians will have the opportunity to participate in the 2016 November General Election by registering to vote online or submitting a voter registration form by Friday, October 21, 2016. Virginians can visit www.registerva.com to register.

Contact:  Jasmine Leeward, 804-250-6514, jleeward@newvirginiamajority.org
   Aruna Jain, 202-930-5334, justwordmedia@gmail.com

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New Virginia Majority organizes for progressive transformation of Virginia through mass organizing of communities of color, women, working people, LGBTQ people, youth and progressive people to create a Virginia that is democratic, just and sustainable.


Portsmouth residents to demand urgent action on city flood plan

Petition calls for immediate remedy to absence of storm drains in city adjacent to Elizabeth River

Who: Portsmouth residents, New Virginia Majority organizers

What: Press conference on urgent need for responsible flood plan followed by Portsmouth City Council Meeting

When: 6:30 press conference, 7 p.m. council meeting, Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Where: Portsmouth City Hall, 801 Crawford Parkway, Portsmouth, VA 23704

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New Virginia Majority, Progressive Groups to Host Mayoral Forum On Criminal Justice Reform Saturday

At 2 p.m, Saturday, Sept. 24, New Virginia Majority, Richmond Branch NAACP, and Kinfolks Community Inc. will host a mayoral candidates forum on criminal justice reform called, "Creating Opportunities and Increasing Safety in Our Communities,” at Richmond Public Library’s Main Branch. Confirmed attendees: Jon Baliles, Jack Berry, Bobby Junes, Joe Morrissey, Michelle Mosby, Levar Stoney, Bruce Tyler, and Lawrence Williams, Sr.

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Statement by New Virginia Majority on Supreme Court Decision to Uphold Latest Restoration of Rights Process

For Immediate Release

September 15, 2016

Statement by New Virginia Majority on Supreme Court Decision to Uphold Latest Restoration of Rights Process

Today, it was announced that Gov. Terry McAuliffe will not be held in contempt for continued efforts to  restore voting rights to formerly incarcerated Virginians. After the Supreme Court of Virginia (SCOVA) struck down Gov. McAuliffe’s April executive order he vowed to prioritize restoration, issuing approximately 13,000 individual orders. Since then over 4,400 of those 13,000 people have re-registered to vote. With today’s decision, SCOVA has thrown out the latest attempt to prevent formerly incarcerated people from voting. We can rest assured that those who re-registered after Gov. McAuliffe’s individual restoration orders were given will have the opportunity to exercise their voting rights in November.

"People in the community can now feel confident the process won't be derailed by any more back and forth litigation about their right to vote," said New Virginia Majority Co-Executive Direct Tram Nguyen. "Now we can focus on the important work of restoring their rights and helping them register to vote."

“This decision gives me hope,” said Christopher Rashad of Richmond, who recently received a restoration order. “Having so many disenfranchised individuals get into the democratic process make me think we may be able to effect serious change in some of the poor decisions made by elected officials.”

Those who oppose felon voting rights oppose democracy. This victory restores our hope that, in the end, justice and progress will always prevail.

Contact: Jasmine Leeward, jleeward@newvirginiamajority.org, 804-250-6514

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New Virginia Majority organizes for progressive transformation of Virginia through mass organizing of communities of color, women, working people, LGBT communities, and youth to create a Virginia that is democratic, just and sustainable.

 


New Virginia Majority Statement on Del. Marcus B. Simon’s Proposed Constitutional Amendment

For Immediate Release

September 15, 2016

New Virginia Majority Statement on Del. Marcus B. Simon’s Proposed Constitutional Amendment

Virginia continues to face challenges from an enduring legacy of depriving certain people of their right to vote. New Virginia Majority supports Del. Simon’s (D-Fairfax) proposed constitutional amendment, which recognizes the rights of all citizens to participate in our democracy. We must challenge restrictive voting measures wherever they exist which, in the case of felon voting rights, is as simple as deleting one sentence.

“I will be voting for the first time in my life.” said Tammie Noey, 51, of Richmond, who is an active member of her community and whose voting rights were recently restored. “I am so grateful for this proposed constitutional amendment that recognizes my fundamental rights and no longer allows people like myself to be erased from the democratic process."

Del. Simon's proposed amendment removes an outdated, racist barrier to the right to vote. Felony disenfranchisement serves no legitimate purpose and is designed solely to lock certain people out of the voting process. The General Assembly has a choice to make – continue to uphold the vestiges of Jim Crow, or leave racism where it belongs, in the past.

Contact: Jasmine Leeward, jleeward@newvirginiamajority.org, 804-250-6514

 


New Virginia Majority Statement on Del. Marcus B. Simon’s proposed constitutional amendment

Virginia continues to face challenges from an enduring legacy of depriving certain people of their right to vote. New Virginia Majority supports Del. Simon’s (D-Fairfax)proposed constitutional amendment, which recognizes the rights of all citizens to participate in our democracy. We must challenge restrictive voting measures wherever they exist which, in the case of felon voting rights, is as simple as deleting one sentence.

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Statement by New Virginia Majority on Supreme Court Decision to Uphold Latest Restoration of Rights Process

Today, it was announced that Gov. Terry McAuliffe will not be held in contempt for continued efforts to  restore voting rights to formerly incarcerated Virginians. After the Supreme Court of Virginia (SCOVA) struck down Gov. McAuliffe’s April executive order he vowed to prioritize restoration, issuing approximately 13,000 individual orders. Since then over 4,400 of those 13,000 people have re-registered to vote. With today’s decision, SCOVA has thrown out the latest attempt to prevent formerly incarcerated people from voting. We can rest assured that those who re-registered after Gov. McAuliffe’s individual restoration orders were given will have the opportunity to exercise their voting rights in November.

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Statement by New Virginia Majority on Sen. Norment’s Proposed Constitutional Amendment

For Immediate Release

September 1, 2016

In response to Sen. Norment’s recently proposed legislation, New Virginia Majority Co-Executive Director Tram Nguyen issued the following statement:

This is not the time for Republicans to pick and choose which voting-age adults get to have a voice, and which do not. The time for that was in the Jim Crow era, when racist power structures sought to keep people of color out of power. People who have served their sentences and completed all the requirements of probation and parole shouldn’t be punished for life. They have already been before a judge and a jury. The disenfranchisement of people who have already served sentences for prior mistakes is an outdated, discriminatory vestige of our nation’s Jim Crow past. To keep imposing a sentence on them is not justice, it’s retribution. Adding insult to injury, the fines, fees and restitution amount to a modern-day poll tax.

Contact: Jasmine Leeward, jleeward@newvirginiamajority.org, 804-250-6514


Statement by New Virginia Majority on Today's Restoration of Rights Announcement

Today, Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced a way forward for people to get their voting rights restored. We applaud today’s news that 13,000 formerly incarcerated people in Virginia who were registered to vote after the April restoration order -- only to have that canceled by the Virginia Supreme Court’s decision last month -- will once again will have their rights restored through this process.

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