“For too many Native Americans living in Indian Country in New Mexico and across the nation, simply casting a ballot in an election takes a significant amount of time and effort,” Udall said. “Polling places are located hours from home, it’s difficult to get absentee ballots, and tribal IDs aren’t recognized as a valid form of voter identification. These unfair barriers discourage Native Americans from making their voices heard on election day. Our bill would help break down these obstacles so voters across Indian Country can exercise their fundamental American rights.”
“Nobody should be denied the basic right to vote and have a say in the democratic process,” Tester said. “We should be doing everything we can to increase access to the polls and remove the barriers that keep too many folks from voting. The Native American Voting Rights Act ensures that tribes are receiving the resources needed to increase the opportunity for folks to cast their ballot.”
“Native Americans were the last to legally obtain the fundamental right to vote in the United States, and Native voters continue to face persistent barriers in exercising that right today. Voters on Indian reservations may be hours away from the nearest polling place. The provisions included in the Native American Voting Rights Act will help ensure that American Indians and Alaska Natives have the basic access to elections that most Americans take for granted,” National Congress of American Indians President Brian Cladoosby said.
The full text of the Native American Voting Rights Act is available here.