A Conversation on, "Uncounted: The Crisis of Voter Suppression in America"
March 31, 2022
Gilda R. Daniels (NYU Law '90), Professor of Law, University of Baltimore School of Law and Author of, Uncounted: The Crisis of Voter Suppression in America joined in conversation with Wendy Weiser, Vice President of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center to discuss Daniels's book and the crisis of voter suppression today.
Uncounted examines the phenomenon of disenfranchisement through the lens of history, race, law, and the democratic process. Gilda R. Daniels, who served as Deputy Chief in the United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division and has more than two decades of voting rights experience, argues that voter suppression works in cycles, constantly adapting and finding new ways to hinder access for an exponentially growing minority population. She warns that a premeditated strategy of restrictive laws and deceptive practices has taken root and is eroding the very basis of American democracy―the right to vote!
This program was co-sponsored by the NYU Brademas Center and the NYU Brennan Center for Justice, and is open to everyone. Registration was required in order to receive the Zoom log-in details and this session was recorded.
Gilda R. Daniels (NYU LAW '90) serves as a Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law. She is a nationally recognized voting rights and election law expert. She is a former Deputy Chief in the Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Voting Section. Professor Daniels has more than two decades of voting rights/election law experience. She has investigated, negotiated and litigated cases involving the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the National Voter Registration Act and other voting statutes. She is the author of UNCOUNTED: Voter Suppression in the United States (NYU Press) released in January 2020.
She is also the Director of Litigation for Advancement Project’s National Office, which is a multi-racial civil rights organization. She supervises attorneys in four program areas: Power & Democracy (voting rights), Opportunity to Learn (education), Justice (policing and criminalization) and Immigrant Justice (immigration). She has drafted and participated in amicus briefs filed in the United States Supreme Court, frequently consults on voting rights issues, and is well published. Her scholarship focuses on the intersections of race law and democracy. Her law review articles have appeared in Cardozo Law Review, Indiana University Law Review (Indianapolis), Denver Law Review, New York University Journal of Legislation and Public Policy. Her writings have also been published in the Huffington Post and various other publications. She has been quoted in the Washington Post and interviewed for NPR’s All things Considered.
She is a sought after consultant and expert, as well as, a frequent contributor for media and conference panels. She lectures on voting issues on university campuses and various organizations ranging from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the American Constitution Society to her local church. Prior to beginning her voting rights career, Daniels was a staff attorney with the Southern Center for Human Rights representing death row inmates and bringing prison condition cases in Georgia and Alabama. She clerked in the United States Circuit Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit with the Honorable Joseph W. Hatchett and is a graduate of New York University School of Law, where she was a Root Tilden Scholar and Grambling State University. She has a website, www.gildadaniels.com that promotes her scholarship and voter education.
Wendy Weiser directs the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, a nonpartisan think tank and public interest law center that works to revitalize, reform, and defend systems of democracy and justice. Her program focuses on voting rights and elections, money in politics and ethics, redistricting and representation, government dysfunction, rule of law, and fair courts. She founded and directed the program’s Voting Rights and Elections Project, directing litigation, research, and advocacy efforts to enhance political participation and prevent voter disenfranchisement across the country.
She has authored a number of nationally recognized publications and articles on voting rights and election reform, litigated groundbreaking lawsuits on democracy issues, testified before both houses of Congress and in a variety of state legislatures, and provided legislative and policy drafting assistance to federal and state legislators and administrators across the country.
She is a frequent public speaker and media commentator on democracy issues. She has appeared on CBS News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, PBS, ABC News, and NPR, among others; her commentary has been published in the New York Times, the Washington Post, USA Today, and elsewhere; and she is frequently quoted by the New York Times, the Washington Post, National Journal, Politico, and other news outlets across the country. She has also served as an adjunct professor at NYU School of Law.
Prior to joining the Brennan Center, Weiser was a senior attorney at NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund, where she worked on issues of access to the courts and domestic violence; a litigation associate at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison; and a law clerk to Judge Eugene H. Nickerson in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. She received her BA from Yale College and her JD from Yale Law School.
An answer to the assault on voting rights—crucial reading in light of the 2020 presidential election.
The Voting Rights Act of 1965 is considered one of the most effective pieces of legislation the United States has ever passed. It enfranchised hundreds of thousands of voters, particularly in the American South, and drew attention to the problem of voter suppression. Yet in recent years there has been a continuous assault on access to the ballot box in the form of stricter voter ID requirements, meritless claims of rigged elections, and baseless accusations of voter fraud. In the past these efforts were aimed at eliminating African American voters from the rolls, and today, new laws seek to eliminate voters of color, the poor, and the elderly, groups that historically vote for the Democratic Party.
Learn more about the book on NYU Press.