September 21, 2023

Passing the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act is not just a moral imperative; it's good for business

The right to vote is fundamental to who we are as Americans. Our economy depends on healthy democratic institutions built on secure and accessible elections, free from discriminatory barriers to voter participation. Civically engaged employees are good for business and critical to a vibrant democracy.

Today, Business for America (BFA) is proud once again to endorse the reintroduction of the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act (VRAA) in the House of Representatives. Introduced by Representative Terri Sewell as H.R. 14, the bill would restore and modernize the full protections of the historic Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Since its passage, the Voting Rights Act has been reauthorized four times by large bipartisan majorities, most recently in 2006 when the bill passed by 98–0 in the Senate and was then signed by President George W. Bush. The right to vote is not — and has not historically been — a partisan issue; it is an American one.

For businesses, ensuring that every valid voter can register and cast their ballot without difficulty is a moral imperative. We have a responsibility to ensure that the voices of our employees and communities are heard. This means voting must be both convenient and secure, and voters must be able to exercise their right to vote free from discrimination and intimidation.

In 2021, BFA helped launch Business for Voting Rights in partnership with civil rights organizations. We recruited a large majority of the 250+ civic-minded companies and business groups who signed a letter urging Congress to pass the VRAA. In light of the ongoing wave of unnecessary, restrictive new voting rules, we are confident that those businesses share our sense of urgency around protecting voting rights.

“We believe American businesses have a duty to help protect the equal right to vote for our employees, our customers, and our communities,” said Sarah Bonk, founder of Business for America. “State and federal officials should be working to make it easier to vote, not harder. There’s no reason to sacrifice inclusivity for security in this day and age.”

We remain staunch supporters of this legislation and urge Congress to work together on a bipartisan basis and ensure equal voting rights by passing the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.

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About Business for America
Business for America is a nonpartisan nonprofit business membership organization advancing solutions to boost civic engagement, reduce political polarization, and modernize government. A well-functioning democracy will foster a more competitive, innovative business climate in America. Businesses interested in getting involved can learn more at bfa.us.