In late June, the Supreme Court invalidated the heart of the Voting Rights Act by nullifying the portion of the law that defines the states and counties covered under Section 5, which requires federal preclearence for changes to voting laws in areas with histories of discrimination. Now, the responsibility falls to legislators to update the list of areas Section 5 covers and to give the VRA back its teeth. Texas has already implemented a voter id law—the most restrictive in the nation—that was previously judged to be discriminatory by a federal court and at least five other southern states are pushing harsh new voting restrictions.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has expressed her commitment to restoring the VRA, calling for the “John Lewis Voting Rights Act.” Contact your representatives and implore them to honor Lewis’s legendary civil rights legacy with a new Voting Rights Act.
In his recent editorial, Nation writer and voting rights expert Ari Berman explains how activists are already moving ‘from outrage to action’ in fighting the Supreme Court’s regressive VRA decision.
In this recent interview with Sam Seder’s Majority Report, Berman explained how the VRA ruling will help southern states recreate segregation in congressional districts.