Posted on February 16, 2022
The Brennan Center for Justice is defending our democracy, thanks to CREDO members
American democracy faces unprecedented attacks. Our partners at the Brennan Center for Justice believe the best way to defend our democracy is to strengthen it. The organization works to craft and advance a transformative reform agenda — solutions that aim to make our democracy work for all.
In July 2021, CREDO members voted to distribute $58,710 to support the Brennan Center in its advocacy for real democracy reform, fight against voter suppression tactics, and work for a fair justice system — through in-depth research, top-notch litigation, and bold solutions. In total, CREDO has donated nearly $400,000 to support the group’s important democracy work.
Here are some recent victories and new projects of the Brennan Center, thanks to funding from CREDO members:
Victory against partisan gerrymandering
Recently in Ohio, the state supreme court struck down the Ohio Redistricting Commission’s new legislative maps after a challenge by community groups and voters represented by the Brennan Center and Reed Smith. The commissions’ deeply partisan maps favored Republicans in violation of the state constitution.
Voting Laws Roundup in the news
The group’s Voting Rights Roundup has been used by media outlets and other organizations to track the disturbing number of new legislation proposed (and enacted) that would make voting more difficult to accomplish, especially for communities historically disenfranchised from the vote.
As of December 2021, the group’s Roundup noted that 19 states have enacted 34 laws that will negatively impact voting, including laws that criminalize such actions as passing water to voters waiting in long lines, or providing information on options for mail-in voting. The Roundups will continue into 2022 and will now track legislation that threatens the integrity of the electoral process.
New voting rights projects
Since receiving the grant, the Brennan Center’s main priority – passing the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act – suffered the setback of a frustrating and disappointing Senate vote. While the organization will continue to fight for federal legislative action, its work to fight back against voter suppression in the states, including through litigation when necessary, continues.
The group has also launched a new program focused on the courts, particularly state courts and state constitutions — which are now even more critical to ensuring civil, social, and voting rights in the wake of both a conservative turn in the highest court, and continued attacks on democratic processes.