(Washington, DC) -- Attorney General Merrick Garland is vowing to double the enforcement staff for his department's voting rights division. Garland spoke at the Justice Department Friday and said the right to vote is the cornerstone of American democracy. He argued the protection of voting rights has been "drastically weakened" since the Supreme Court effectively removed the heart of the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act. The speech comes amid the growing controversy over efforts in many Republican-led states to craft new voting laws. Garland said new laws and post-election audits are being carefully scrutinized.