Online Originals: 1965 Voting Rights Act 55th Anniversary

Online Originals

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) Thursday, August 6th is the 55th anniversary of the passing of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting practices.

But today, is there still voter suppression?

Barbara Sutton is president of the Lenoir County NAACP.

She says “Even in the midst of a 55 year anniversary, we as a nation still face and have to deal with voter suppression and we are still having to fight just to vote.”

Sutton also says “We encourage everyone to apply for an absentee ballot, as we continue to deal with these uncertain times. It is a ‘just in case’ tool. A lot of blood was shed and lives were lost, this is the costly price that was paid to ensure we could all vote.”

The Trump administration has stirred a debate about mail-in voting and whether it increases the chance of voter fraud.

Kinston Mayor Don Hardy says he believes mail-in ballots are a great tool.

He says it allows everyone the opportunity to vote and have their voices heard.

Mayor Hardy says when people’s voices aren’t heard due to lack of opportunities to vote, then those people’s needs aren’t met by the people who advocate and represent them.

The less options given, Hardy says, the more the opportunity for voter suppression to occur.

Tony McQueen, Deputy Director of the Pitt County Board of Elections says they are providing more voting hours and adding extra voting sites.

There will now be 7 voting sites within Pitt County for early voting.

McQueen says he wants everyone to have a pleasant and easy voting experience.

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