Ensuring Accessible, Open, and Accurate Elections
Congressman Serrano is a strong supporter of efforts to ensure that all Americans have the right to vote and the security to know that their vote has been correctly counted. He believes that states should have the freedom to choose the voting system they feel most comfortable with, but also the responsibility to ensure that all voters have the ability to vote and to have their vote correctly counted.
As Chair of the Financial Services Appropriations Subcommittee, Congressman Serrano has helped work towards these goals. The subcommittee has jurisdiction and funding responsibility over the Election Assistance Commission as well as the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). Since 2007, Serrano has provided states with $285 million in HAVA funding to help states ensure that their elections are fair, secure, open, and accurate. He has also worked to ensure that the Election Assistance Commission is an open, transparent, and non-partisan organization that all states can rely on as a clearinghouse for information on election administration.
Congressman Serrano has also helped New York on its path to new, accurate, and secure voting machines. In 2007, he helped New York save $49 million in federal funding that is being used to purchase new accessible machines for voters with disabilities. In addition, he helped Puerto Rico start to attain its fair share of HAVA funding by removing a restriction that greatly limited Puerto Rico’s ability to receive federal funding to update their voting systems.
Congressman Serrano believes that under the Constitution, the federal government has a duty to protect those groups- like African-Americans and Latinos- who have been historically discriminated against in the voting process.
In 2006, Serrano cosponsored the reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act- which ensures that racial and language minorities are not discriminated against in the election process. This law, in place since 1965, has greatly increased the number of African-Americans and Latinos serving in Congress, and has prevented discrimination both in the polling place and in redistricting efforts. In 2007, Congressman Serrano was an original cosponsor of the Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimidation Prevention Act, which criminalizes knowing efforts to provide false information to voters with the intent of preventing them from exercising their right to vote.
More on Voting Rights
Washington, DC – Congressman José Serrano today released the following statement in response to the New York federal court decision blocking the Department of Commerce from including a citizenship question in the 2020 Census. Serrano is the top Democrat in the House Appropriations Commerce, Justice and Science Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over the Department of Commerce and the Census Bureau:
Washington, DC – Congressman José E. Serrano, Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Commerce, Justice, and Science Subcommittee, released the following statement on the FY2018 omnibus bill released today. Serrano, who was instrumental in shaping the CJS portion of the legislation, successfully fought to increase funding for the U.S. Census Bureau, the elimination of a number of riders that would have undermined gun safety, and an increase in funding for programs to help combat the opioid crisis nationwide.
“This is a first step in addressing the needs of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The funding provides short term assistance to the government of Puerto Rico and the federal government, allowing them to continue their relief and recovery efforts.
The Bronx – Today, Congressman Serrano was joined by Former Mayor David Dinkins; Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.; New York State Senator Gustavo Rivera; New York State Assemblyman Victor Pichardo; Councilmember Vanessa L. Gibson; and Bronx Postmaster Lilliam Rodriguez for the renaming ceremony of the Morris Heights Post Office, located at 2024 Jerome Avenue, in honor of Dr. Roscoe C. Brown, Jr. The renaming was made possible thanks to Congressman Serrano and other members of the NY Delegation efforts in Congress last year.
WASHINGTON, DC- Today, Reps. José E. Serrano (D-NY), Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD), and Wm. Lacy Clay (D-MO) sent a letter to U.S. Census Bureau Population Division Chief Karen Humes urging the Bureau to amend a proposed rule, which would allow states to count incarcerated persons at prison facilities at which they are incarcerated on Census Day, instead of their last known address.
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congressman José E. Serrano today celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, and called on Republicans in Congress to restore the Act. The original legislation was signed into law by Democratic President Johnson on this date in 1965.
Washington, DC – Last week, Congressman José E. Serrano joined Congressmen John Lewis, House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, James Clyburn, John Conyers, and Robert Brady in introducing the Voter Empowerment Act (VEA) as an original co-sponsor. The VEA, which was co-sponsored by more than 170 House Democrats, will modernize our country’s voting registration system to ensure every eligible voter has equal rights and equal access to the ballot box.
On Capitol Hill
Congressman Serrano Introduces Legislation to Honor Herman Badillo
On Tuesday March 10th, Congressman Serrano introduced legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives to rename the Morrisania Post Office in honor of the late Representative Herman Badillo. Senator Schumer and Gillibrand introduced similar legislation in the Senate. Congressmen Rangel and Crowley also helped introduce the legislation.
Washington, DC - Today, Congressman José E. Serrano, Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee, released the following statement on President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2016 Budget proposal:
“President Obama has presented Congress with a balanced proposal focused on strengthening and expanding the middle class, and creating a 21st century economy where everyone wins—not just a few rich individuals and corporations.
The Bronx, NY – August 28, 2013 – Congressman José E. Serrano released the following statement today in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.
"The message of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom rang out from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to the National Mall and across our nation—calling us to the high purposes of justice and equality. The truths of that day spoken by Dr. King and others still urge us on towards a better future for this great country.