Evolution of Voting Rights in America

Timeline created by katieho
In History
  • Article I, Section 4- The Constitution

    This declared the legislature to assign the times, places, and manner of elections for Senators and Representatives; Congress may alter the law at any time. This did not give citizens the right to vote at all. Instead, it denied them their right.
  • New Jersey's Law

    New Jersey's Law
    Voting rights were originally given to all inhabitants; however, New Jersey then passed a new law to deny women and Black men the right to vote. This similarly occurred in other states. Some banned specific races, ethnicities, genders, etc.
  • Seneca Falls Convention

    Seneca Falls Convention
    The first women's rights convention that fought for the social, civil, and religious rights of women. This launched the women's suffrage movement; although many decades later, this movement ensured women the right to vote. Women still struggle with having equal rights and thanks to the women's suffrage movement, women are allowed to vote in the 2020 Election for the presidential candidate in support of obtaining equal rights for women.
  • Reconstruction: Black Codes

    Reconstruction: Black Codes
    These codes were designed to restrict the freedom of African Americans and keep them available as a cheap labor force. These were introduced shortly after the Civil War where slavery had barely been abolished. Black codes could be seen in the form of "Jim Crow laws" that would not be abolished until the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
  • Reconstruction: 14th-15th Amendments

    Reconstruction: 14th-15th Amendments
    The 14th Amendment granted citizenship to everyone born in America and equal protection of the laws; this included former slaves. The 15th Amendment ensured the people to never be denied the right to vote due to their race. Influencers, family, friends, etc. are all encouraging one another to vote in the upcoming 2020 Election because these amendments cannot deny the people's rights.
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    Reconstruction: Congressional Oversight

    The United States Congress' ability to oversee the executive branch, the President. The Constitution does not say anything about congressional oversight but rather implies that Congress possesses all legislative power. They are allowed to monitor the actions and policies by House committees since the 2016 Election. They will especially be monitoring the actions for the 2020 Election.
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    End of Reconstruction: "Jim Crow"

    These were laws enforcing racial segregation in Southern US states. Water fountains, schools, shops, and basically everything was segregated by Whites and Colored. It was made official by the decision from the Supreme Court in Plessy v. Ferguson to have Blacks and Whites "separate but equal."
  • Constitutional Convention of Mississippi

    Constitutional Convention of Mississippi
    This convention was designed to get around the 15th Amendment. Tactics were instituted such as poll taxes and literacy tests specifically designed to deny Blacks their right to vote.
  • 19th Amendment

    19th Amendment
    This amendment finally granted women in America the right to vote. The women's suffrage movement lasted for over a century with it beginning at the Seneca Falls Convention. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment. Women in the 2020 Election will continue to use their voice in their vote as they continue to fight for women's rights.
  • 24th Amendment

    24th Amendment
    Citizens shall not be denied the right to vote by reason to fail paying a poll tax. Taxing citizens a poll tax was incredibly suppressive to voters. This amendment made way for many new voters. In the 2020 Election, the voter turnout rate might possibly be the highest rate within the past 50 elections thanks to many amendments including this one.
  • Voting Rights Act

    Voting Rights Act
    Removed policies and practices limiting African Americans right to vote; it also required states to change election laws based on the suppression of voting rights about race. With unfortunate racial issues being brought up to our attention, the upcoming election gives people the ability to use their voice.
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    Recent Acts of Voter Suppression

    In recent years, Republican-led state legislatures have introduced a variety of new restrictions that make voting more difficult. These restrictions include obtaining proof of citizenship first, shortening voting periods, and the limited access to mail-in voting. Especially in the 2020 Election, mail-in voting is an essential and safer way to cast your vote which makes it all the more important to be universal in the United States.
  • Shelby County v. Holder

    Shelby County v. Holder
    A decision made by the Supreme Court that left communities facing new discriminatory voting laws and barriers. Jurisdictions in this decision were chosen based on the fact that there was a history of discrimination in voting.