The Supreme Court agreed today to decide whether the key enforcement provision of the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965 should be scrapped, amid arguments it is a constitutionally unnecessary vestige of the civil rights era.
Known as Section 5, the provision gives the federal government open-ended oversight of states and localities with a history of voter discrimination. Any changes in voting laws and procedures in the covered states must be "pre-cleared" by federal authorities in Washington.
The provision was reauthorized by Congress in 2006 for 25 more years. This move prompted a lawsuit by officials in Shelby County, Alabama, who argued that the monitoring was overly burdensome and unwarranted.
The case could be one of the biggest the justices tackle this term, potentially offering a social, political and legal barometer on the progress of civil rights in the United States - and the justices take on the level of national vigilance still needed to ensure that minorities have equal access in the election process.
While the high court announced this week its intention to take up the issue, oral arguments - and, after that, a decision - won't come until next year.
wiseup: There needs to be a national standard of states election policies. How long a preiod of early voting. any purging of voter roles must be done well before an upcoming electons. Voter Ids laws must make it easier for older citizens to obtain increase the number of places photo ids can be obtained by any govt. facility, such as a BMV, Court house, Post Office, Etc. College students photo Id Should be sufficent. Any purging should send those purged notice and give them opportunity to challenge purge.
If anything Voter Rights need to be strengthened. Politicians are using underhanded methods to stack the deck in favor of themselves (or their party). This past election is a case in point. Florida is a perfect example. Texas is a close second.
Absolutely right! The lines and lines of voters that conservatives tried to disenfranchise by manipulating procedures, staffing, registration, etc., are perfect evidence for retaining, and EXPANDING this law. Voting standards need to be set and monitored nationwide.
Because we all know how hard it is to get a fake drivers license or student id card, right......
Honestly, those 2 have got to be among the WORST forms of ID you could ask for. Ask any law enforcement officer how many fake DL's & student ID's they see. (Some states have made DL's harder to dupicate, but there's still a long wat to go,)
Why should there be early voting? We have an election day in this country. We offer absentee ballots for those out of the area on election day or those that are required to work all day. Absentee ballots should be accepted within a limited window of no more than two weeks. How can anybody intelligently make up their mind further out than that? The world changes and changes fast – a person does not have all the info. they need to make an intelligent voting decision months in advance. You need to be a US citizen to vote – trying to vote and not being a US citizen is illegal and deportable.
I think we just witnessed exactly why the Voting RIghts Act is still key to ensuring fair elections.
...And why it's so suspect that Shelby County wants to be rid of it...
Wifey says never trust a man in a dress.
If you have nothing to hide, you should have no objection to anything in the Voting Rights Act. Period.
That has been the argument of every dictator in history
Voter with student id is disqualified to vote but with gun permit,what kind of democracy we conduct in voting?
All men are created equal. However some are now more equal than others.
While the idea of having a univeral standard is good, yeilding to the feds on the issue is an issue. Especially if the locals have to pick up the tab.
The locals are the ones making it an issue.
If anything, the rhetoric behind this election should display without a shadow of a doubt that we should move to renew the voting rights act for another 50 years. Screw 25.
I fully expect the SCOTUS to f this up.
They might do just that. I would not be all that surprised, actually.
But they also might be saving up their "special f-up powers" for something else, too.
We will see....
I'm sure Scalia, Thomas, and Alito are barely able to contain their excitement over the chance to gut this pesky precedent and return election law to the Jim Crowe era.
Do you know this for a fact? Cite your sources so we can all see them. Or are you just talking out of your a$$ since that is where your brains obviously are?
Gee, Alabama, what a surprise!
This is the last breath of a dying breed.
At some point the federal govt needs to stop its oversigt of the states on this issue. These states will always have a history of discrimination (you can't change history), but the power of the federal govt needs to be restrained.
You make absolutely no sense. You contradict yourself.
I agree with most of you, this law needs to be applied equally across all 50 States, DC and the territories. The dung heap goes way beyond thr old Confederacy extending up here to Michigasn where our Sec. of State tried to purge the voting rolls of unworthies.
what we need right here is to get rid of the electoral college which is clearly outdated and just enforce i.d. based voting. pretty goddam simple. just like you peopleseses
The reason for the electoral college is make sure candidates don't just visit the areas with the largest population.
A quick knee-jerk reaction: Florida voter suppression, GOP legislature restricting early voting, Miami just completed counting ballots today. Wonder how awful the voting burden would be in south Florida without any federal protections.
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