Civil and Voting Rights
Rep. Chu participated in the "NoH8" campaign to show her support for the LGBT community.
When the civil liberties of any group are violated, we all suffer Protecting the ideals of justice and equal protection under the law is necessary to ensure our country is one where all people are treated equal.
Our civil rights were earned by the blood, sweat and tears of those who came before us. I believe that all Americans deserve to have their rights protected and enforced. History has shown time and time again that systematic discrimination against any group of Americans is a threat to the freedom of all Americans. Congress must work to end all forms of government-sanctioned discrimination, so every American can be treated equally and has a meaningful opportunity to participate in our democracy.
For these reasons, I am committed to standing up against racial and ethnic profiling, ensuring that all American citizens have the right to vote, supporting equal rights and opportunities for women, protecting marriage equality for all Americans, ensuring equal rights in the workplace and in housing, and fighting for meaningful campaign finance reform.
Protecting the Voting Rights of All Americans
The right to vote is one of our most sacred rights and is fundamental to American democracy. Unfortunately since 2011, there has been a concerted effort by state legislatures to pass laws that suppress the voting rights of Americans (over 160 laws have been introduced). These measures have made it harder for millions of Americans to vote – especially the elderly, our youth, the disabled and minorities.
For more than 40 years, the Voting Rights Act (VRA) has been one of our best tools for combating discrimination—particularly in places with a history of discrimination. However, in 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court significantly weakened the VRA in its decision in Shelby County v. Holder by striking down the formula used in the VRA to determine which states and local governments would need to obtain court approval before changing their voting laws or practices. Although the VRA was designed to prevent abusive practices in areas that had a history of voting discrimination, the Court held that the formula was implemented based on data that was too old. Without new legislation to undo the damage done by Shelby, minority communities are now at risk of being disenfranchised.
• Restoring the Voting Rights Amendment Act (VRAA). I am a co-sponsor of the Voting Rights Amendment Act, a bipartisan bill which modernizes the VRA to address current circumstances. The bill would work to prevent discrimination on the basis of race, color, or membership in a language minority group, and would also require public notice and transparency regarding any changes to: (1) voting prerequisites, standards, or procedures; (2) polling place resources; or (3) demographics and electoral districts.
Protecting Democracy for All Americans
American democracy has been centered on the fundamental principle of one person, one vote and the notion that we all have an equal voice and say over government decisions that affect our lives and our nation. However, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission in 2010 eroded this principle by allowing corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money on American elections. The decision has very dangerous implications for the rights of Americans, as corporations are now able to make unlimited campaign donations without disclosing who they are. In 2014, the Supreme Court further expanded the influence of money in politics, in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, which invalidated aggregate limits on how much a single donor could spend per an election cycle, making it easier for the very the wealthy to influence elections.
I am working to ensure every American has an equal voice in our elections by:
• Overturning endless political spending under Citizens United. I am a cosponsor of the Democracy for All Amendment which would amend the U.S. Constitution to reverse the effects of Citizens United and McCutcheon decisions, and limit the ability of corporations and the wealthiest donors to buy unlimited influence in our elections. This constitutional amendment would allow Congress and the States to regulate and set reasonable limits on the raising and spending of money by candidates and others to influence elections.
• Fighting for open and transparent campaign funding. I voted for H.R. 1 – a landmark anti-corruption bill. This bill would clean up our campaign finance laws to take dark money out of politics and increase disclosure requirements, both of which help voters understand what influences our decision making. And it also puts more power into the hands of our own auditors, the Office of Government Ethics to conduct more oversight and enforcement and put in stricter lobbying requirements. It’s not enough for us to demand integrity, we have to demonstrate it as well. This transparency will help our government run more efficiently and honestly, which is better for all of us.
More on Civil and Voting Rights
Washington, DC — Today, Representatives Judy Chu (CA-27) and Andy Levin (MI-09) reintroduced the Promoting Respect for Individuals’ Dignity and Equality (PRIDE) Act of 2021. The legislation updates the federal tax code so that same sex marriages are given full equality under the law, in both language and benefits.
WASHINGTON, D.C.— Today, Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) issued the following statement on the one-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd:
WASHINGTON, DC - Today, a jury found Derek Chauvin guilty of all three counts in the murder of George Floyd. Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) issued the following statement:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the House voted to pass H.R. 5, the Equality Act. The Equality Act ensures equal treatment of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning or Queer(LGBTQ) individuals by amending the Civil Rights Act, Fair Housing Act, the Equal Credit and Opportunity Act, and the Jury Selection Act to create a single national prohibition on discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation in employment, housing, public accommodation, education, and more.
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Representative Judy Chu (D-Calif.) U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.) and applauded President Biden’s immediate action to repeal the Muslim ban on his first day in office. Chu and Coons issued the following statement:
Democratic U.S Reps. Adam Schiff and Judy Chu added their votes in support of House Resolution 8015, the Delivering for America Act, a bill aimed at saving the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), and the right to vote from changes to both by the Trump administration.
The legislation, which passed by a 257-150 House vote, prohibits the Postal Service from implementing or approving any changes to the operations or service levels in effect on Jan. 1 that would impede prompt, reliable, and efficient service.
WASHINGTON — Today, Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) held a press conference outside the Pasadena Post Office to condemn the White House’s attempts to hobble post office services before the election, including cutting worker hours, shutting down sorting machines, and removing post boxes. At the press conference, Rep. Chu also stated that the Administration’s announcement that they would suspend further changes to the post office was insufficient, announcing that on Saturday, the House will vote on H.R.
On Tuesday, Rep. Judy Chu (D-San Gabriel Valley) and members of the union that represents local postal workers blasted cost-saving measures they said are hamstringing the U.S. Postal Service ahead of the presidential election.
Chu called the recent cutbacks "sabotage" meant to undercut the public's faith in mail-in voting.
"This is a threat not only to our democracy, but also to our ability to stop the coronavirus pandemic," Chu said.
Rep. Judy Chu, D-Monterey Park, held a press conference at the Pasadena Post Office with members of the American Postal Workers Union to call on the US Postal Service to be protected.
“This is not only a threat to our democracy, but also to people’s health,” she said in a written statement, as voting from home is necessary to help contain the spread of the coronavirus this year.”
Chu also added that the Postal Service is crucial for things beyond the election.
The chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif, has released a toolkit to guide her colleagues on how to avoid inciting or emboldening anti-Asian sentiment and racism tied to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The toolkit, which Chu disseminated to her fellow members of Congress last week, lays out language to help lawmakers push back on rising anti-Asian bias, offering suggestions on how to discuss China's role in the pandemic.