The Biggest Fear Of Republicans: Minorities Voting
Yesterday, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced he was suing the state of Texas over their racially bias redistricting map. Basically, Garland argues, despite Texas getting two new seats in the House of Representatives because of growth that primarily occurred among minority populations, the districts they created instead only give power to white voters.
The term what Texas is doing is gerrymandering, named after the fifth Vice President Elbridge Gerry who approved a map which contained one district that looked like a salamander while Governor of Massachusetts.
The Supreme Court has been famously quiet on the practice, although that does not mean they haven’t implemented some restrictions. In the 1962 case Baker v. Carr they ruled that gerrymandering cannot be done to advantage members of one racial group and in the 1964 case Wesberry v. Sanders they ruled that districts for the House of Representatives have to be roughly equal in size. In 2014, the Supreme Court ruled in Alabama Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama that if a district counts a being racially gerrymandered must be decided on a district by district basis, basically meaning any precedent would be impossible to created.
Still, the fact that Texas’s new district map is so racially bias is certainly worth noting. This same year, Texas passed a voter suppression bill that would disproportionately impact the minority population of the state. Although in this case Texas was simply following in the footsteps of its fellow former Confederate state of Georgia, which infamously also passed a much harder voter suppression bill this year.
Ever since the 2013 Supreme Court case Shelby County v. Holder gutted key provisions of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, states have been allowed to engage in voter suppression with little oversight. Still, whenever a case makes it to the a court, it becomes obvious what Republicans are trying to do. Hence the 2016 court case when a North Carolina voter ID law was struck down because it targeted minorities “with almost surgical procession.”
Voter ID laws have been a common cause for Republicans for multiple years now. The first state to require people to show an identification to vote was South Carolina in 1950, after we had already elected thirty three Presidents just fine without any such requirement. For that matter, it has been proven that every form of voter ID laws supported by Republicans specifically disadvantage minorities. The ACLU has also found that voter ID laws lowers voter turnout by roughly two to three percentage points. To give you an idea of how much that could be, two percent of the 159,633,396 people who voted in the 2020 Presidential Election is 3,192,668 people, roughly the entire population of Utah.
Of course, the reason why Republicans are doing this is simple: It’s the only way they can win elections. Former chairman of Florida's Republican Party Jim Greer famously said on suppressing early voting:
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham also noted on Fox News on 11/8/2020:
Here is the fact, Garland is right to sue Texas over their obviously racially bias voter map. However, Garland must go farther if he wants to have any chance of saving Democracy from Republican nonsense.
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