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Autonomy Versus Equality: Voting Rights Rediscovered

59 Pages Posted: 17 Jun 2005  

Terry Smith

Fordham University School of Law


Using empirical and other evidence, this paper examines the success of Shaw v. Reno and the Supreme Court's wrongful districiting cases in reducing the role of race in politics. Observing that the Court has shown an inability to distinguish between race as such and politics, the author argues that rather than reduce the role of race, more than a decade of the wrongful districting cases has simply reduced minority political autonomy under the stalking horse of color-blindness. The author argues that this autonomy ought not be so easily disposable because it is rooted in the Constitution and in the exercise of the franchise.

Suggested Citation

Smith, Terry, Autonomy Versus Equality: Voting Rights Rediscovered. Fordham Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 89. Available at SSRN: or

Terry Smith (Contact Author)

Fordham University School of Law ( email )

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