The 2020 presidential election revealed the many cruel and unnecessary barriers that far too many Americans still face in order to vote. From confusing voter registration instructions to long lines outside of too few polling places, there are still many hurdles to participating in our democracy.

It doesn’t have to be this way – not if Congress can pass the For the People Act.

The For the People Act is an expansive bill that would greatly strengthen our democracy and level the playing field for all Americans in the political process. The act is so comprehensive that it would take on the numerous barriers to voting and representation, like stopping partisan gerrymandering, overturning racist voter ID laws, and ending felony disenfranchisement. It would also register millions of new voters. Many of these barriers are Jim Crow relics that continue to disproportionately impact Black and brown Americans across the country.

Prioritizing this bold democracy reform would send the strong signal that our new Congress and administration are serious about ending America’s racist voter suppression laws, which is why I’m urging Congress to pass the For the People Act.

Mike Rostie, Rochester