Issue Position: Civil Rights
Senator Dodd has long worked to protect and expand civil rights and civil liberties for all Americans. He supports legislation to prosecute hate crimes and to end racial profiling, and is a supporter of affirmative action to ensure equal opportunity for all. He has also opposed judges nominated by the Bush Administration who have demonstrated opposition to civil rights, and was a cosponsor of the Civil Rights Restoration Act, a bill to restore civil rights that were put in peril by decisions of the United States Supreme Court in recent years. Senator Dodd also supports the right of workers to collectively bargain, and the right of every American to earn a living wage by raising the federal minimum wage. Highlights of his recent legislative accomplishments include:
Dodd authored and successfully enacted landmark election reform legislation -- the "Help America Vote Act" -- following the 2000 presidential election to protect the voting rights of all Americans. This law has been called the most important civil rights legislation since the Voting Rights Act of 1965. It strengthens the voting rights of all Americans -- regardless of race, income, or disability -- to better ensure that their votes are counted.
Recognizing the important contributions made by African Americans to American life and history, Dodd co-authored a law to create the National Museum of African American History in Washington, DC.
Senator Dodd is the co-author with Senator Jim Talent (R-MO) of legislation to establish an Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Division at the Department of Justice. This division would be responsible for investigating and prosecuting long-unsolved civil rights crimes against Americanss successfully passed out of the Senate. The legislation passed the Senate in mid-2005.