(Washington, D.C.) – Last week, U.S. Senator Patty Murray voted to extend the Voting Rights Act for a period of 25 years. The measure was approved in the Senate by a 98-0 vote.

Murray's statement follows:

"I proudly voted to extend the Voting Rights Act to ensure that all Americans can participate freely in the democratic process. I'm pleased that the Senate passed the reauthorization bill with unanimous, bipartisan support.

"Since 1965 the Voting Rights Act has protected minority voters from intimidation and discrimination. Enacted at a time when violence and bigotry demanded federal action, it has stood the test of time, and now serves as a safeguard maintaining the progress we have made on civil rights."