Testimony of Professor Michael T. Morley Before the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights & Civil Liberties
28 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2020
Date Written: Sept 24, 2019
This is the written statement I submitted in conjunction with my testimony before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights & Civil Liberties concerning potential amendments to the Voting Rights Act. The statement begins by discussing the Supreme Court's evolving understanding of the scope of Congress' power to protect constitutional rights, including the right to vote, under Section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment. Reviewing the numerous important federal laws the Court has struck down as exceeding Congress' Section 5 power, my testimony then distills the general principles underlying the Court's holdings. Finally, it reviews H.R. 4, the Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2019 in light of these principles, identifying provisions that are at the greatest risk of being struck down by the Court, as well as others that could be amended to more effectively and efficiently protect voting rights.
Keywords: Elections, Constitutional Law, Voting Rights, Voting Rights Act, Voting Rights Advancement Act, Congress, Judiciary Committee, Section 5, Fourteenth Amendment, City of Boerne, Katzenbach v. Morgan
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