April 19, 2021

Statement of ABA President Patricia Lee Refo Re: Voting rights

WASHINGTON, April 19, 2021– The American Bar Association believes the right to vote and choose elected leaders is the foundation of American democracy. Longstanding ABA policy calls on federal and state governments to take steps to ensure that all citizens who are eligible to vote can do so freely and securely in a manner that maximizes public participation.

The ABA supports absentee voting for all registered voters, regardless of reason, with clear and understandable voting procedures and instructions to facilitate such voting. In states and localities with early voting, the ABA supports specific guidelines that ensure an adequate number of polling places, adequate notice of polling hours and locations, enough time for early voting and no announcement of results until polls close on Election Day. Further, the ABA recommends that election officials consider the use of emerging technologies to improve participation for all eligible voters.

These principles underline the ABA’s commitment to participatory democracy and its belief that access to the ballot box is critical to the rule of law.

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