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We all know that the decision aims to give states with a history of race based voter suppression more leeway to revert to their old ways. We also know that the decision was based on partisan interests, not law or justice. We can also be pretty sure that court had no business interfering in a Constitutionally irrelevant situation, just as they did in Bush v Gore.

And yet, the decision can be turned into a landmark moment for equal rights. There is no disagreement that Congress will have to do something about the struck down section of the VRA. It can weasel around and make something empty and pretty. Or it can move our voting disgrace one big step toward democracy. The way is simple, even elegant: when the issue comes up, forget about trying to reimpose the current restrictions on the wayward states. Instead make every single state subject to the same scrutiny when it tries to change its laws on who gets to vote. One person, one vote. That simple. It applies in Ohio and Michigan and Wisconsin and Illinois as much as it does to the South. It requires the funding to address and prosecute violators.

No discrimination, no "unfairness", no "singling out". Just enforcement of the Constitution for modern times.

I think this should become the focus of a huge push from Dems, liberals, leftists, and groups like MoveOn, Act Blue, DFA, etc. Make the Republicans/teabaggers defend blocking a nondiscriminatory act to follow what the Constitution demands. The Dems will need a big kick in the butt to get on this. We're the ones responsible for delivering it.

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Comment Preferences

  •  What size push do you think it will take to get (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lcrp, FG

    the Tea Bagger House to commit political suicide? They can survive stonewalling, but they absolutely cannot survive the dempgraphics that they will unleash by going along with "reform".

    There can be no protection locally if we're content to ignore the fact that there are no controls globally.

    by oldpotsmuggler on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 06:25:22 PM PDT

  •  I like this. I will ask Ed Markey to support this (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, lcrp, BetterDemocrats

    after he is sworn in a our new Senator from MA.  He is up for re-election in one  and one half years again.  I have a hunch he will like this idea, however.  

  •  I have a different but positive political take (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lcrp, Berkeley Fred, Cedwyn

    In 2012, the efforts of the Repugs to depress minority voting backfired on them big time, with Black, Hispanic and youth voters putting up with standing in long lines to vote Dem as a badge of "you try to screw us, we fight back."  This is yet another opportunity for the Repugs to overreach; they will pass a bunch of voter i.D. and other voter restricting legislation in state legislatures they control, and this will be publicized and will energize people who normally don't turn out for mid-term elections to come out to vote.  The increase in voting from these people will way offset the number of voters who wind up not voting (when they otherwise would have) because of any newly passed voter restrictions.

    I view all the Repug legislating and Supreme Court retrograde voting as the last gasp before demographics finally push the Repugs into political oblivion, which should happen by 2020 (an appropriate year to "see clearly," politically speaking).

    •  The backlash may be explosive (5+ / 0-)

      Let's put into perspective what we're talking about here: the effective gutting of the Voting Rights Act. This is the legislation that made concrete the demands of the civil rights movement. The legislation that finally overturned a century of American apartheid, which resulted from a devastating civil war and two centuries of slavery in America. The legislation that LBJ correctly predicted would lose the South to the Democratic Party for half a century, and the legislation that turned the Republican Party, destroyer of the Confederacy, into the Confederacy's spiritual heir.

      Congress has about a month to create a new map for Section 5. After that, the GOP might as well permanently give up on all outreach efforts to the African-American community: for as long as there's a GOP, it will be irretrievably stained as the defenders of white supremacy. Perhaps you remember some years ago wild rumors circulating in the African-American community that the Voting Rights Act was due to be repealed. People tsked-tsked this, saying it was inconceivable something like that could happen. And yet now, maybe 5 years later, the VRA is on the verge of being reduced to words on paper.

      I'm not sure how long it will take before this sinks it, but sink in it will. In every black church, community center, gathering, the word will get out. Every thinking non-white American should read the message loud and clear. We're almost a year and a half before the 2014 elections, and I could see this being a problem. But come 2016 and beyond, the KRATS may have lit a fire that will burn the GOP down with it.

      •  You are assuming it makes any difference. (0+ / 0-)

        Remember, there is no right to vote for president period which means the states with Rethug legislatures and governors can simply pass a law saying that their state's electoral votes go to the Rethug candidate in the 2016 election.  In fact, I am surprised that Walker and the Wisconsin legislature haven't done so already.

        You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

        by Throw The Bums Out on Wed Jun 26, 2013 at 03:44:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It has to sink in beyond the black community. (0+ / 0-)

        As with so many social movements, it will probably start there, but it can't stop there. We will need every ally we've got to shove the sorry truth into every American's face that the very concept of the equal right to vote is under a serious and determined attack to destroy it. Not just for "minorities" but for everyone who isn't a sycophant to the ruling oligarchy. SCOTUS has made voting the core issue of our time, once again. If we let them get away with it we lose everything.

  •  ??? (0+ / 0-)
    There is no disagreement that Congress will have to do something about the struck down section of the VRA.
    Indeed, given that this issue has political ramifications, there is plenty of disagreement on whether Congress must, or will, do anything in response. A belief that Congress will do nothing on this issue is well-founded, and optimistic.  A belief that Congress will make the situation even worse is the smartest bet.  

    Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

    by Big River Bandido on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 06:41:14 PM PDT

    •  It all depends on whether Americans (0+ / 0-)

      decide to force Congress to act. We can't depend on Congress, the Dems, the demographic change (which has become the new all-purpose excuse for indifference). It's us -- the ones willing to fight the way the ones who forced the original VRA were willing to fight -- who matter. Frankly, all the blase predictions here about how nothing will change are less than useless. A self fulfilling prophesy at best. Which side are you on?

      •  Congress is already owned, and not by us. (0+ / 0-)

        I'm on the side that says electoral politics and government have become so corrupted as to be a chimera and a farce, and that we should act more like Brasilians.  

        A few weeks of general strikes — hitting plutocrats in their pockets — is one of the few tools we have to break their stranglehold on public policy.  I think we are headed that way, but it will take a really obvious, heavy-handed move by the establishment that badly backfires and offends the broader public. Sadly, neither the VRA nor the NSA issues have the salience to move such a huge mass movement.  Even more sadly, instead of being able to take the initiative, we have to wait for the establishment to really screw up.

        Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

        by Big River Bandido on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 09:45:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  A fantasy, because dreams can be made real: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    msmacgyver, oldpotsmuggler

    2014, the house becomes a liberal supermajority.

    The SCOTUS scrotums  succumb.

    Gitmo becomes a Cuban national park, and Yankees are free to visit and welcome.

    NDAA and the Patriot act are overturned.

    The war on terror focuses on K street.

    Citizens Benighted is overturned and bribery is equated to treason.

    I could go on but I'm sure you have your own fantasies to consider.

    elect Elizabeth Warren to the presidency, 2016

    by Wood Gas on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 07:03:11 PM PDT

  •  Personally, this was an idiotic move (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cedwyn

    It's just going to cause a massive backlash. You saw what happened in 2012 when the GOP tried to surpress the vote in several states and it just backfired on them and made people more determined to vote. Same things going to happen here.

    And Roberts yet again shredded whatever legitimacy he had as a Chief Justice. History is not going to look kindly on him. This could haunt him the same way that the Dred Scott decision followed Roger Taney into the grave.

    Oh and once again, how much more of a POS can Clarence Thomas be? He's gone past Uncle Tom standards and straight to Uncle Ruckus.

    •  Think Steven in Django Unchained! (nt) (0+ / 0-)
    •  Which is why this is such a huge opportunity. (0+ / 0-)

      Change requires involvement. This giant step backward, essentially gutting the VRA, gives us the means to wake people up to what the Vast Rightwing Conspiracy has been working for all these years. IT is an opportunity to stand up for basic constitutional principles that have become endangered.

      But places like Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin prove that the war on voting is not limited to the old confederacy. We can either waste this pivot point on regional squabbling or we can use it to mandate equal voting rights everywhere. It's actually the easier argument to make and propagate. Arguing against a universal right to vote, OTOH, is a very hard sell. But pushing the button will take much more than depending on the Dems or some mythical demographic change to just fix everything on their own.

      Unfortunately, judging from many of the comments here, just waiting for the miracle to come, or bitching about how nothing can work, seems to be the prevailing attitude.

  •  the right to vote (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ranton, highacidity

    needs its own constitutional amendment.  

    Please don't dominate the rap, Jack, if you got nothin' new to say - Grateful Dead

    by Cedwyn on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 08:02:52 PM PDT

    •  Does it? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cedwyn

      I don't know. It would be the ideal solution, but I don't see where a law requiring national standards for voting would go against the Constitution.

      •  such a law would be great (0+ / 0-)

        but a constitutional amendment is a lot harder to undo.

        Please don't dominate the rap, Jack, if you got nothin' new to say - Grateful Dead

        by Cedwyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:54:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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