Andrew Young and the Voting Rights Act of 1965

Andrew Young

Young is an advocate for democracy and boosting voting numbers. hide caption

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It has been 40 years since Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Blacks in the United States had been given the right to vote by the Fifteenth Amendment in 1870. But many counties imposed poll taxes, literacy tests and other obstacles for those who tried to cast a ballot.

Andrew Young helped draft the Voting Rights Act while he was an executive assistant to Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. He went on to become a member of Congress, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, and the mayor of Atlanta.

Young talks with Scott Simon about the fight to protect the right to vote for minorities and the current state of democracy in America.



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