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Voting Rights

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The right to vote represents America and the freedoms of this country, but it was not always like this and took hard work and perseverance to earn this freedom for all Americans. Originally in 1776 when the declaration of independence was signed, only white men who owned property were allowed to vote (“History of Voting Rights,” n.d.). Almost two decades later, New Hampshire eliminated the property requirements to voting, allowing the majority of white men to vote and in 1828 the religion barrier was lifted, meaning white men who were not Protestants could vote. Continuing this trend, in 1856 North Carolina was the last state to eliminate these restrictions resulting in all white men the right to vote, while African Americans were still not considered citizens. Ten years later, this was demolished and anyone born in the United States was granted a citizenship. The next milestone for voting history was the Fifteenth Amendment that passed in 1870 which stated “all male citizens regardless of ‘race, color, or previous condition of servitude’” were granted the right to vote and four decades later, the Nineteenth Amendment passed guarantying all citizens the right to vote regardless of gender (“History of Voting Rights,” n.d.). One hundred years later the 26th Amendment made the voting age 18 and over. In 1993 voting became easier creating mail-in registration, and voting opportunities at the “DMVs, unemployment offices, and other state agencies” following this trend, in 2009
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