Thank you for everything your newspaper did to ensure our community was registered, educated and activated for Election Day.
As you and your readers know, in 2008 our nation saw the highest turnout at the ballot box for African-Americans. In fact, Black women had the highest turnout rate of all demographic groups.
Then the backlash ensued. Over the last two years, we saw extremist legislatures across the country pass more laws seeking to block more people from the ballot box than at any time since the dawn of the Jim Crow era. From cuts to early and Sunday voting and restrictions on registration drives, to felony disenfranchisement and strict photo voter ID requirements, these new laws disproportionately impact Black voters.
Yet these restrictions only energized Black voters who saw their fundamental right to vote under attack. Thanks to our partners in civil and labor rights organizations, church groups, fraternities and sororities, community associations, and the Black press, the NAACP registered over 432,000 voters and helped turn out over 1.2 million voters on Election Day.
After all of the ballots are counted, we will see our community turnout at the same level or even higher than in 2008.
None of this would have been possible without your dedication to covering these critical election issues. Your paper is an essential conduit for the information people needed to vote.
While we have won this battle, this war wages on. I look forward to standing shoulder to shoulder with you as we continue the struggle for justice and equality.
Benjamin Todd Jealous
President and CEO of the NAACP