Throughout my public service career, I’ve been guided by the principle that our democracy works best when as many eligible Americans as possible participate. That’s particularly important in a state as big and diverse as California.

For two decades, the California Voting Rights Act, or CVRA, has strengthened our democracy by helping ensure that historically disadvantaged communities have a fair opportunity to elect their preferred candidates without having their collective voting power diluted. The law established criteria for when local jurisdictions must replace at-large elections – which have been shown to disadvantage minority voters – with individual district elections. The success of the California law has served as a model for states that have passed similar voting rights laws.