Introduced by U.S. Rep Jesse Jackson Jr., March 2005
Editor’s note: If you came to this page through a web search and it seems strange to you that we are calling for an amendment to establish something you thought we already had, you may want to first read why we need a constitutional right to vote.
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION 28
Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States regarding the right to vote. This resolution was introduced in March of 2005 by U.S. Representative Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-IL) and has 58 co-sponsors as of April 2005.
- Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, (two-thirds of each House concurring therein), That the following article is proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the Constitution when ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States:
- SECTION 1. All citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, shall have the right to vote in any public election held in the jurisdiction in which the citizen resides. The right to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States, any State, or any other public or private person or entity, except that the United States or any State may establish regulations narrowly tailored to produce efficient and honest elections.
- SECTION 2. Each State shall administer public elections in the State in accordance with election performance standards established by the Congress. The Congress shall reconsider such election performance standards at least once every four years to determine if higher standards should be established to reflect improvements in methods and practices regarding the administration of elections.
- SECTION 3. Each State shall provide any eligible voter the opportunity to register and vote on the day of any public election.
- SECTION 4. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
Additional Resources and Tools
- Why we need a constitutional right to vote (op-ed)
- Current list of House members who have endorsed HJR 28. See the search tool at Vote-Smart.org to get the name and contact information for your elected officials.
- See Professor Jamin Raskin’s in-depth exploration of the issue and strategic considerations (pdf).
- So what is the Voting Rights Act?
- For an in-depth analysis of the impacts of ex-felon disenfranchisement, see The Truly Disenfranchised by Manza, Uggen and Britton (pdf).
- Establishing a Right to Vote is one of three constitutional amendments proposed by ReclaimDemocracy.org.
- On the disenfranchisement of U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico (also applies to other territories).
- See our Political Transformation page for more on electoral reforms and links to other key organizations addressing these issues.
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