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Right to Vote Study Group

D, Wake (LWV-Fairfax) | Published on 7/6/2023

Right to vote

Program Planning

Registering and Educating Voters is What We Do

Deb Wake, LWV-Fairfax


Your help is needed to complete a comprehensive study that when completed could give us an expanded position for advocacy.


At our biennial convention last month member delegates voted to approve the recommended program:

The Voting & Elections Issues Group proposes a new study addressing universal suffrage as expressed in SJ 272 [2021]. That bill would have removed the stipulations in Section 1, Article II of the Virginia Constitution that disenfranchise citizens convicted of a felony and those adjudicated to be mentally incompetent. It would also have added a “fundamental right to vote” clause in both the title and body of
Section 1. The study would examine the history and underpinnings of the concept of a right to vote and the rationale for universal suffrage. It could additionally consider the need for an explicit right to vote, as distinguished from the implicit rights in the federal Bill of Rights.


Other topics that might fall within the scope of the study are:

  • Which specific rights are conferred upon a citizen?
  • What do state and federal constitutions say about voting or citizenship? What about the UN Declaration of Human Rights?
  • Should the voting age be lowered to 16? Should there be an upper limit as well?
  • Do you need to prove mental competency?
  • What is the impact of the Shelby Co decision gutting parts of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) and how does the Virginia VRA address those gaps
  • Should there be qualifications to vote like being informed?
  • How accessible should voting be? 
  • What have been the barriers–to whom and why?

Our next meeting will be held virtually on July 11 at 9 am.

Please contact Deb Wake if you are interested. We would love to have good representation across all our local Leagues.

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LWV of Williamsburg Area

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Williamsburg, VA 23187-1086
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