Congress Must Act to Guard Our Most Important Right

Orlando Sentinel, Friday Aug 16, 2013, p. A14

1 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2013

Date Written: August 16, 2013


The recent Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v.Holder, invalidating the “pre-clearance” formula of the Voting Rights Act — which required states with a history of race discrimination in voting to secure federal approval prior to changing election practices — provides an opportunity for Congress to strengthen protection of minority voting rights.

While discriminatory methods today are far from the lynch mobs and grandfather clauses that stopped blacks from voting during Jim Crow, the end result of voter suppression and dilution remains largely the same. Congress should act quickly and decisively on this core American principle in order to ensure minority participation in the democratic process.

Keywords: Congress, Voting Rights Act, Shelby County v. Holder, race discrimination, election practices, voter suppression, Justice Department

JEL Classification: J71, J78, J79, K19, K39, K49

Suggested Citation

Higginbotham, F. Michael, Congress Must Act to Guard Our Most Important Right (August 16, 2013). Orlando Sentinel, Friday Aug 16, 2013, p. A14, Available at SSRN: or

F. Michael Higginbotham (Contact Author)

University of Baltimore - School of Law ( email )

1420 N. Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21218
United States

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