As usual, Jesse Jackson’s column “Right to Vote Needs Constitutional Protection” (Sept. 18) was timely and informative. The fact that voting rights are administered by states is incredibly important for all Americans to know. And the despicable voter suppression laws passed in many red and swing states should be a reminder to all Americans that voter rights need protections.
His call for voter registration reforms include many great ideas, including AVR. Automatic Voter Registration just passed in Illinois after our governor finally signed it the second time around. This law allows Illinoisans to be registered automatically when they visit a state agency such as the Department of Motor Vehicles. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, young people do not obtain drivers licenses as enthusiastically as they did in previous decades.
SEND LETTERS TO: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes.
Another idea would be to register high school students during their civics classes. Thanks to the efforts of the League of Women Voters of Illinois, every student must take a civics class during his or her high school career. Most take this class during senior year. Since 17-year-olds can vote in primary elections (if they will turn 18 by the general election), this would be a great time to sign them up. Teachers in these classes can easily become voter registrars. There is no better lesson to teach in a civics class than the importance of voting in every election.
Jan Goldberg, Riverside
Sounding the horns on health care repeal
Once again, while we are being bombarded with distractions — Russia, North Korea, even dreams of single-payer healthcare — the GOP is trying one last time to tear down the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare, and rip health insurance coverage away from millions. They are outdoing all their previous mix-and-match, give a little, take a lot attempts at fatally crippling the ACA.
Only, this time, they have rolled all of their worst ideas into one bill and are trying to sneak it through so quickly and with so little transparency that there will not even be enough time for the Congressional Budget Office to analyze and score it. And, to top it all off, they plan to actually take money from “blue” traditionally Democratic-voting states, and give almost exclusively it to “red” states that voted for Trump in the 2016 election. The reductions happen in states that expanded Medicaid.
Every Republican senator and representative, in every state, should hear from their constituents how bad an idea this bill is. Don’t let them get away with this.
Michael Hart, West Ridge