Nadler: Supreme Court Ignored Near Unanimous Findings of Congress in Flawed Voting Rights Act Decision

Jun 25, 2013 Issues: Civil Liberties, Civil Rights

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), the top Democrat on the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice, issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court decision in the Voting Rights Act case:

“Today’s decision undermines this nation’s strong commitment to the protection of voting rights for all. The pre-clearance requirement, now largely suspended by the Court until and unless Congress acts to revitalize it, has proven one of the most effective tools we have to fight the creative use of new strategies aimed at disenfranchising minority voters.  In recent years, preclearance prevented a spate of just such efforts around the country.  The continued need for this critical backstop was one of the many reasons that Congress voted overwhelmingly to reauthorize the Voting Rights Act. 

“By a slim 5-4 majority, the Court has now substituted its own judgment for the bi-partisan and near unanimous findings of the Congress, ignoring the current record of voting problems compiled by Congress that supported the continued need for the Voting Rights Acts’ coverage formula and preclearance requirement.   We must act immediately to respond to this decision and restore the Voting Rights Act’s key enforcement mechanism.”

Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10) is the Ranking Democratic Member on the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice of the House Judiciary Committee.  He was previously the Chairman of the Subcommittee.

In that capacity, he played an active role in the reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act, including the section struck down by the Supreme Court today, and was joined with other colleagues in filing an amicus brief in support of the Act in the Shelby County Case.

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