HOUSTON, TX – The right to vote is the very cornerstone of our democracy. To protect this fundamental right and ensure that all eligible voters in Harris County may vote in the 2012 election, the Houston Area Urban League, the NAACP Houston Branch, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and Common Cause have joined together as community partners to launch a nonpartisan initiative called “Houston’s Protect the Vote 2012″ (HPTV).
“For some, the right to vote was only secured through tremendous sacrifice. Yet, in the past two years a voter suppression campaign has swept across our nation seeking to disenfranchise millions of Americans. Left unchallenged it has the potential of erasing the hard-fought progress our country has made over the last century in voting rights,” says Judson Robinson, President and CEO of the Houston Area Urban League. “While old suppression tactics such as poll taxes and literacy tests are no longer present, today’s more subtle disenfranchisement efforts are no less pernicious. They are sometimes camouflaged under the guise of preventing so-called voter fraud and are typically aimed at minorities, poor people, women, young people, persons with disabilities, and the elderly,” says Rev. Reginald Lillie, President of the NAACP Houston Branch and Pastor of Greater True Faith Missionary Baptist Church.
“To protect and preserve the integrity of our election process, Election Protection, a nonpartisan coalition of over 100 groups, offers a number of resources for voters including a hotline to voice concerns or ask questions,” says Sylvia Mayer, a partner with Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP and a member of the Election Protection Houston Leadership Committee. “We must work together to protect everyone’s right to vote,” says The Honorable Rodney Ellis, Texas Senator for District 13.
On Friday, October 19, 2012, beginning at 10:00 AM CST, at the Palm Center early voting polling station located at 5300 Griggs Road, Houston TX 77021 (the east side facing Griggs Road), HPTV will hold a press conference to outline election protection efforts. The following persons will speak at the press conference: The Honorable Rodney Ellis, Texas Senator for District 13; Rev. Reginald Lillie, President of the NAACP Houston Branch and Pastor of Greater True Faith Missionary Baptist Church; Ms. Herlinda Garcia, Director of The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) District VIII; and Ms. Sylvia A. Mayer, partner with Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP and a member of the Election Protection Houston Leadership Committee.
Representatives of the following organizations have been invited to attend the press conference: the League of Women Voters, the League of Young Voters, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, the Texas Legislative Black Caucus, LULAC, AFL-CIO, the Latino Labor Leadership Council, Code Pink, the Filipino American Caucus for Empowerment, the National Council of Negro Women, the National Women of Achievement, Veterans for Peace, the Houston GLBT Political Caucus, Disability Rights Texas, the Communication Workers of America, the Advancement Project, the Islamic Law Society, the Vietnamese American Chamber of Commerce, SEARCH Homeless Services, AARP, the National Basketball Players Association, the National Basketball Retired Players Association, the NFL Retired Players Association, the NFL Players Association, the Greater Kashmere Gardens Super Neighborhood, Southwood Civic Club, Southeast Concerned Citizens League, University Oaks Civic Club, Pakistani American Voters Registration Initiative, AME Voter Alert, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, the Asian American Bar Association, the Hispanic Bar Association, the Houston Lawyers Association, the Mexican American Bar Association, the South Asian Bar Association, South Texas College of Law, the University of Houston Law School, the Thurgood Marshall School of Law, the African Law Students Association, the Asian Law Students Association, the Black Law Students Association, the Hispanic Law Student Association, the Jewish Law Students Association, and the Middle Eastern Student Association.
CONTACT: For more information contact Judson Robinson III, President & CEO of the Houston Area Urban League, cell phone: (713) 504-4950 or office: (713) 393-8720.
ABOUT HPTV: Houston’s Protect the Vote 2012 is an election protection initiative of the four community partners. Its sole mission is to ensure that all eligible voters in Harris County have an opportunity to vote in the November 2012 election. It is funded by donations from the public and grants given to its member groups, and has no paid staff.
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