The Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA) is arguably the most significant piece of federal legislation aimed at enforcing and protecting the voting rights of minorities. While the Fifteenth Amendment enfranchises African Americans, it does not necessarily clear the way to the polls for them. After nearly a century of countenancing various forms of intimidation and legalistic obstructions to black voters, the federal government passed sweeping legislation that fills important gaps in African Americans’ constitutional right to vote. The VRA essentially mandates access to the polls for minority groups. The VRA prevents states from enforcing a range of discriminatory practices legislated to prevent African Americans from participating in the voting process. As a result of the VRA, the federal government intervened directly in areas where African Americans had been denied the right to vote.