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The Hill Explores the US Electorate at the Library of Congress

Screen Shot 2014-06-12 at 12.56.05Last night at the Library of Congress, The Hill brought together Jeffrey Toobin, legal analyst for CNN and The New Yorker; House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.); and former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) for a conversation on the US electorate, voting practices and election law, and weekend voting.

After introductions, Toobin called out the headline of the day - House Majority Leader Eric Cantor‘s defeat by Tea Party challenger Dave Brat in the 7th District of Virginia primary.

“I think unfortunately, there’s too wide a sentiment that ‘My vote does not make a difference’,” said Hoyer.

Lott added, “When the House of Representatives Majority Leader only gets, I think it was 28,000 votes in the primary, that’s pretty shocking…We don’t encourage people to vote enough.”

The former Senate Majority Leader went on to put support behind the state of Louisiana’s practice of voting on Saturdays.

“I think we ought to make it easier for people to register. We need a conscious effort to try to do that. We need to look at other changes in election laws. We need to modernize our election systems. We need to concentrate on having good, honorable men and women of integrity to be in charge of elections…but I don’t think we have professionalized our effort to have more participation, open, transparent, and modern elections.”

The conversation later turned to a broader roundtable including Rep. John Larson (D-CT); Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK); John Fund, columnist, National Review Online; and Sherrilyn Ifill, president, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, among others.

For full video of the event, click here.

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