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A Modest Proposal on Voting Rights

letsgetitdone's picture

In light of the Supreme Court's decision on the Voting Rights Act, upholding the principle that States must be treated equally under the Constitution when it comes to new voting legislation they enact, but people, in relation to their exercising their voting rights, not so much; there's a real need for proposals to make Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act operative again by re-writing Section 4. Here's a modest proposal.

I call on Congress to reconstruct Section 4 to require that all States must submit new legislation changing voting their voting rules to the Justice Department for pre-clearance. My proposal has the following great advantages.

First, it can be drafted in a single page bill that everyone can understand.

Second, it would prevent the clearly discriminatory voting legislation recently passed, or currently being proposed in many American States.

Third, it treats all the States absolutely equally, while having the likely long-term impact that equality for individuals across States in voting will be increased.

Fourth, it complies very well with the Supreme Court's latest reasoning about Sections 4 and Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.

Fifth, it can't pass the Senate without getting rid of the filibuster; so it places further pressure on Harry Reid to get rid of that noxious anti-democratic practice.

Sixth, this is legislation that people can really believe in and get behind; so politicians who advocate for it will be on the right side of popular sentiment and the advance of democracy.

Seventh, if the Congress sits on the proposal and fails to pass it, then this can be a compelling issue for the campaign of 2014, providing a great basis to mobilize people to come to the polls to elect people committed to saving our democracy.

Let's get behind this, immediately, and let's not take any hostages, or allow any compromises, Let's get complete voting rights equality for everyone, no matter where they live in the United States.

(Cross-posted from New Economic Perspectives.)

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jo6pac's picture
Submitted by jo6pac on

with every point except submitting it to doj, eric the holder department just isn't up for the job on hand.

This action is just another way of the old white guys on the scotus are telling us they'll pick the next potus for the Amerikan citizens.

Submitted by Hugh on

Republicans like the Shelby County v. Holder decision because it will allow more voter suppression. Democrats will rail against it but still like it because they can use it in fundraising.

jo6pac's picture
Submitted by jo6pac on

they can use it in fundraising

LOL my thought also and I'm sure it will start tomorrow

letsgetitdone's picture
Submitted by letsgetitdone on


Submitted by ubetchaiam on

While I understand Donne's " “Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind." I can't help but wishing for death of those 5 who voted to strip the VRA of Section 4. This people are not 'constuctionists' but facists. The twisted logic of data being out of date when there is so much current evidence of efforts to curtail the abiliity to vote is ludicrous.
And between this, the militarization of the border associated with the immigration bill, and the NSA programs, anyone who thinks that the U.S. hasn't already moved into a dictatorial capitalistic state is denying reality.