Today is a profoundly important anniversary for all Americans and for the principles we hold dear. On August 6, 1965, President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act, which outlawed discriminatory barriers to voting and brought the power of the Federal government to bear in protecting access to the ballot box for all Americans, regardless of race. It is an incredibly important date in our history, and I want to encourage everyone to take a moment today to contemplate the lasting effect of the Voting Rights Act, one of our most important guarantors of freedom and equality for all Americans.
Today is an opportunity to remember all those who have participated in the long struggle to end discrimination and extend the voting franchise to everyone. We all owe them a tremendous debt, because it is their sacrifices and commitment that has allowed our country to make so much progress. I especially want to thank all the Long Beach residents who engaged in the Civil Rights Movement.
Americans, and people around the world, have had to fight for the right to vote, and it’s important that we exercise that right at every opportunity. That’s why today is the perfect time to register to vote, if you are not already registered. You can register at the City Clerk’s office, the Department of Motor Vehicles, or on line at:
This is also the perfect time to welcome our new City Clerk, who will be charged with overseeing our elections. Maria de la Luz Garcia (no relation to me) is an outstanding public servant, and I have complete confidence in her ability to lead our Clerk’s office and ensure our city continues to be a leader in electoral efficiency, the use of technology, and citizen outreach.
I am incredibly proud that our city remains committed to equality, diversity, and freedom, and I know Ms. de la Luz Garcia will continue that tradition.