With a Supreme Court that is borderline hostile to voting rights and Congress in perpetual gridlock, it is no wonder voters and their advocates are despairing. Still, fade out the polarization noise, and the fact of the matter is that 25 states have enacted legislation to expand voter access and voting rights in 2021, including Republican-run, North Dakota. Virginia even adopted its own state-level Voting Rights Act, creating a review process to prevent local jurisdictions from implementing discriminatory voting practices.
In several states, including New York, Nevada, Kentucky, Louisiana, Indiana, and Oklahoma, compromise legislation limiting the ease of voting in some respects and relaxing it in others was adopted. Negotiations between Pennsylvania’s Republican legislature and its Democratic Governor over access to the ballot opened last week when the legislature announced proposed legislation. The Brennan Center’s comprehensive accounting of states that have restricted voting rights in 2021 is available here.