WASHINGTON — The League of Women Voters of the United States issued the following statement after the Eighth Circuit of Appeals ruled there is no “private right of action” for Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act:
“Monday’s decision is another devastating attempt to threaten our democracy. The Voting Rights Act, one of the most important laws of our time, was intended to create a pathway to thwarting racial discrimination in voting targeting Black voters and voters of color. For far too long, Black voters and voters of color have endured attempts to undermine their votes and safety. This decision to further erode the Voting Rights Act has taken voting rights back to the days of Jim Crow.
“The Voting Rights Act was designed to allow voters to remedy racial discrimination by bringing lawsuits in federal court. After the Supreme Court ruled this summer to uphold Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, the Eight Circuit’s decision to block the very voters who are being racially discriminated against from bringing these challenges to court is a gross miscarriage of justice. We must work to dismantle the racist history of America that continues to this day, which is why voters now more than ever need protections to ensure their right to vote is free from discrimination.
“The fight for voting rights continues to be an uphill challenge — but it doesn’t have to be. The League of Women Voters urges the Supreme Court to overturn this misguided decision, uphold recent precedent with Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, and protect the right to vote for Black Americans.”
The Latest from the League
In the last decade, the US Supreme Court has severely weakened the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which was widely agreed to be the most influential civil rights law in our history.
This term, the Court considers Section 2 in Merrill v. Milligan (now Allen v. Milligan). It threatens to weaken a well-established precedent lower courts have used for decades to evaluate redistricting plans alleged to be racially discriminatory.
This blog explores the history of Section 2 and its impact on discriminatory redistricting plans, explains the dispute in Milligan, and previews potential next steps to protect voting rights.
The following is a statement from Elisabeth MacNamara, President of the League of Women Voters of the U.S.:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Kelly Ceballos