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US Supreme Court strikes down voting rights act clause

LowDown

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BBC News - US Supreme Court strikes down Voting Rights Act clause

The US Supreme Court has overturned a key part of a landmark civil rights-era electoral law designed to protect minority voters.

By a margin of 5-4, the justices quashed section 4 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

They ruled that an updated formula was needed to decide which jurisdictions' election laws need monitoring.

The law requires all or parts of 15 US states, mostly in the South, to receive federal approval for election changes.

The Voting Rights Act was extended for 25 years by Congress in 2006 with broad support.

"Congress did not use the record it compiled to shape a coverage formula grounded in current conditions," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the court's opinion.

"It instead re-enacted a formula based on 40-year-old facts having no logical relationship to the present day."
Using facts that are 40 years out of date typifies much thinking about race, an issue for which progress isn't allowed lest special privileges be lost.
 

Samhain

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Striking section 4 also removes the ability to enforce penalties for gerrymandering along perceived racial lines.
 

Fisher

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The SCOTUS more or less signaled last time they heard a VRA Act case that Congress needed to update it very soon if it was to survive, and they did not. This is the price of legislative inaction.
 

Fenton

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It's the right call. States being held perpetually responsible for Democrats
and their Jim Crow Laws was wrong.
 

rocket88

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Striking section 4 also removes the ability to enforce penalties for gerrymandering along perceived racial lines.
But they still can gerrymander along partisan lines. So "We didn't put them in that district because they're black, it's because they're Democrats."
 

ttwtt78640

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Yep. We cannot, in a such a traditionally racist nation, remove special voting laws until we have elected a minority president. Oh wait... never mind - we must keep these "good" discriminatory voting laws until the white male is a minority in this nation. Oh wait... never mind - they must remain forever discrimiantory out of fairness. ;)
 

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I've often heard right-leaning pundits throw around the term "judicial activism" when a court makes a decision which the pundit believes exceeds the Court's role or authority. I wonder if they'll say the same thing here?
 

rocket88

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Yep. We cannot, in a such a traditionally racist nation, remove special voting laws until we have elected a minority president. Oh wait... never mind - we must keep these "good" discriminatory voting laws until the white male is a minority in this nation. Oh wait... never mind - they must remain forever discrimiantory out of fairness. ;)
If the wihite male became a minority and applied these rules, they would suddenly become a lot more popular on the right.
 

TacticalEvilDan

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I also wonder if conservatives who don't think it's appropriate to (re-)interpret the Constitution with modern reality in mind will object to this.
 

rocket88

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I've often heard right-leaning pundits throw around the term "judicial activism" when a court makes a decision which the pundit believes exceeds the Court's role or authority. I wonder if they'll say the same thing here?
No of course not. "Judicial Activism" is something only liberals do. Like the race card. :lamo
 

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I also wonder if conservatives who don't think it's appropriate to (re-)interpret the Constitution with modern reality in mind will object to this.
This had really nothing to do with the Constitution directly. It applies to who holds the power to make the rules.

Tim-
 

ttwtt78640

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If the wihite male became a minority and applied these rules, they would suddenly become a lot more popular on the right.
The white male is a minority at the polls now. Take the total U.S. (potential) voters and subtract all females and then subtract all non-whites and you definitely have a minority (under 1/2) of voters left. ;)
 

TacticalEvilDan

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This had really nothing to do with the Constitution directly. It applies to who holds the power to make the rules.

Tim-
If the law was Constitutional in 1964 it is still Constitutional now. If the Supreme Court is allowed to throw out Federal law passed and signed by a duly elected Congress and President on the basis of it being outdated and nothing more, I guess that means the Constitution is up for grabs as a whole.
 

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If the law was Constitutional in 1964 it is still Constitutional now. If the Supreme Court is allowed to throw out Federal law passed and signed by a duly elected Congress and President on the basis of it being outdated and nothing more, I guess that means the Constitution is up for grabs as a whole.
Yes, but you and I both know that this wasn't specific and or directly related to the constitutionality of the VRA, only provision 4, which, according to the supreme court, lacked any sound basis in reality.


Tim-
 

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Yes, but you and I both know that this wasn't specific and or directly related to the constitutionality of the VRA, only provision 4, which, according to the supreme court, lacked any sound basis in reality.


Tim-
Agreed, however it does illustrate a behavior by the court that exposes it's overreach in power. The court is willing to allow unconstitutional conditions (pass them off as constitutional) for a temporary time in order to address social issues. That's wrong on so many levels. The court as social engineers...
 

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Agreed, however it does illustrate a behavior by the court that exposes it's overreach in power. The court is willing to allow unconstitutional conditions (pass them off as constitutional) for a temporary time in order to address social issues. That's wrong on so many levels. The court as social engineers...
Agreed, and a 5 - 4 decision at that. It is judicial activism, but in fairness they did give congress a shot at changing it previously, and they didn't.


Tim-
 

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Yeah liberals are really crapping in their pants right now that they lost a tool to selectively oppress red areas for something that happened 50+ years ago. Good luck putting that yolk back on the necks of southern states without having it also put on the necks of places like Pennsylvania and Ohio.
 

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Yes, but you and I both know that this wasn't specific and or directly related to the constitutionality of the VRA, only provision 4, which, according to the supreme court, lacked any sound basis in reality.


Tim-
It isn't the Court's job to decide such things.
 

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If the law was Constitutional in 1964 it is still Constitutional now. If the Supreme Court is allowed to throw out Federal law passed and signed by a duly elected Congress and President on the basis of it being outdated and nothing more, I guess that means the Constitution is up for grabs as a whole.
That's actually kind of disturbing if it's true. If the only reason they struck it down is because it's out of date, it seems like a dangerous precedent. I haven't read the decision yet so maybe there's something more there or a good reason I haven't thought of yet.
 

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It isn't the Court's job to decide such things.
Had they been sticking to their "job", their oath of office, they would have never rulled it constitutional in the first place. Instead, they did as they've done in the past, allowed unconstitutional acts and provisions to be constitutional in the court's eyes TEMPORARILY, in order to engage in social engineering.
 

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If the law was Constitutional in 1964 it is still Constitutional now. If the Supreme Court is allowed to throw out Federal law passed and signed by a duly elected Congress and President on the basis of it being outdated and nothing more, I guess that means the Constitution is up for grabs as a whole.
I don't think it was challenged to the Supreme Court prior to now.
 

LowDown

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If the law was Constitutional in 1964 it is still Constitutional now. If the Supreme Court is allowed to throw out Federal law passed and signed by a duly elected Congress and President on the basis of it being outdated and nothing more, I guess that means the Constitution is up for grabs as a whole.
The law was based on the idea that voting problems existed in certain states and counties that didn't exist in other states and counties. So those areas were subject to oversight while the others were not. Those problems disappeared long ago so it is discriminatory, unfair, unnecessary, and stigmatizing to continue to subject them to special oversight that is expensive and burdensome. Every little change in the voting process, such as moving a polling station down the street to another building, required them to get lawyers to draw up papers to be sent to Washington, DC, and then to wait up to 60 days for a reply. Very very few of the applications for changes are being denied, which lends support to the idea that the process isn't necessary any more.

Meanwhile, it's still illegal to discriminate against minorities in the right to vote. But that won't stop radicals like Obama from demagoging the issue out the wazoo, trying to equate this with the end of voting rights.
 

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