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Voting Rights Act Timeline ...
1866 Civil Rights Act of 1866 grants citizenship, but not the right to vote, to all native-born Americans.
Louisiana passes "grandfather clauses" to keep former slaves and their descendants from voting. As a result, registered black voters drops from 44.8%...
Poll taxes are outlawed with the adoption of the 24th Amendment.
President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Voting Rights Act into law, permanently barring barriers to political participation by racial and ethnic minorities, prohibiting any election practice that denies the right to vote on account of race... (Video)
President Richard Nixon signed an extension of the Voting Rights Act.
Nixon: "The Voting Rights Act of 1965 has opened participation in the political process."
President Gerald Ford signed an extension of the Voting Rights Act.
Due, in part, to the enforcement of the Voting Rights Act, the number of black elected officials in Georgia grows to 495 in 1990 from just three prior to the VRA.
2010 to Present
Since 2010 alone, the Department of Justice has had 18 Section 5 objections to voting laws in Texas, South Carolina, Georgia, North Carolina, Mississippi and Louisiana. (video)
Restrictions to voting passed in South Carolina, Texas and Florida are found to disproportionately impact minority voters. (Video)
Texas passed one of the nation's most restrictive voter ID laws. Under the VRA, the state was required to submit the law to DOJ or... (more)
South Carolina passed a restrictive voter ID law that would keep more than 180,000 African Americans from casting a ballot. (more)
In January 2014, a bipartisan group of legislators in Congress took the first step toward developing a new formula and modernizing the Voting Rights Act. (more)
Congress passes the Fifteenth Amendment giving African American men the right to vote.
Only 3% of eligible African Americans in the South are registered to vote.
Jim Crow laws like literacy tests and poll taxes were meant to keep African Americans from voting.
More than 500 non-violent civil rights marchers are attacked by law enforcement officers while attempting to march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama to demand the need for African American voting rights.
By the end of 1965, 250,000 new black voters are registered, one third of them by federal examiners.
Barbara Jordan of Houston and Andrew Young of Atlanta become the first African Americans elected to Congress from the South since Reconstruction. (Video)
President Ronald Reagan signed a 25-year extension of the Voting Rights Act.
Congress extended Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act for an additional 25 years.
A record number of restrictions to voting were introduced in state legislatures nationwide, including photo ID requirements... (more)
Florida passed a law that restricts voter registration and made cuts to early voting. The majority of African Americans in Florida... (more)
Under the VRA, the DOJ blocked South Carolina's voter ID law, saying it discriminates against minority voters... (more)
2013 Shelby v. Holder at the Supreme Court. (more)
View the plain-text version of the Infographic.
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