March 1, 2013
Transcripts of Wednesday”s oral arguments in Shelby County v. Eric Holder are now available on Westlaw at 2013 WL 705522.
ADDITIONAL RESEARCH REFERENCES (How has the South changed…)
Some of the conditions that we relied upon in upholding this statutory scheme in Katzenbach and City of Rome have unquestionably improved. Things have changed in the South. Voter turnout and registration rates now approach parity. Blatantly discriminatory evasions of federal decrees are rare. And minority candidates hold office at unprecedented levels.
Northwest Austin Mun. Utility Dist. No. One v. Holder (2009) 557 U.S. 193, 202 [129 S.Ct. 2504, 2511, 174 L.Ed.2d 140]
…The Congress finds the following:
(1) Significant progress has been made in eliminating first generation barriers experienced by minority voters, including increased numbers of registered minority voters, minority voter turnout, and minority representation in Congress, State legislatures, and local elected offices. This progress is the direct result of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.(2) However, vestiges of discrimination in voting continue to exist as demonstrated by second generation barriers constructed to prevent minority voters from fully participating in the electoral process.(3) The continued evidence of racially polarized voting in each of the jurisdictions covered by the expiring provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 demonstrates that racial and language minorities remain politically vulnerable, warranting the continued protection of the Voting Rights Act of 1965….