Voting Rights Act...still needed?
POSTED: Monday, November 12, 2012 - 5:26pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - 5:52pm
The Voting Rights Act is facing a court challenge, and many states say, it’s about time.
It’s been around for a long time, and no one doubts the necessity.
The question is, is that necessity still there?
The need was plain in 1965.
From the end of the Civil War to the early 60’s, the promise of full citizenship and the voting rights that go along with it were systematically denied to African-Americans in the South.
So what the voting rights act was designed to do was remove the legal barriers to political participation by minority groups throughout the United States.
And so, on March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day, in 1965, President Lyndon Johnson sent the voting Rights Act to Congress. It was passed in the Senate just over 2 months later. That came after a southern filibuster was beaten back.
The House took longer, passing it July 9th.
President Johnson signed it into law August 6th with The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa parks and other civil rights leaders in attendance.
But, given the election of an African-American President, and what many see as a changed south, is the law still needed?
The fight over Texas redistricting, and specifically, a redistricting case in Alabama, may be argued before the court next year.
DR. David Mclendon of Tyler Junior College says the Roberts Court will probably examine whether all remedies under the law were used before addressing the law itself.
Attorney General Abbott is also in line with another challenge, this time over the Voter ID law, but Alabama got to the court first.