Supreme Court ruling on the Voting Rights Act could hurt the Republican Party in the long run


Joshua Green SAYS the Supreme Court decision striking down a core part of the 1965 Voting Rights Act was a pyrrhic victory for the GOP:

On its face, this looks like a big victory for Republicans. But is it really? I suspect it will turn out to be a poisoned chalice. Many of the GOP’s current problems stem from the fact that it is overly beholden to its white, Southern base at a time when the country is rapidly becoming more racially diverse. In order to expand its base of power beyond the House of Representatives, the GOP needs to expand its appeal to minority voters. As the ongoing battle over immigration reform demonstrates, that process is going poorly and looks like it will be very difficult.

The Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a central provision of the Voting Rights Act will make it easier for Republicans to hold and expand their power in those mainly Southern states. That will, in turn, make it easier for them to hold the House. It will also intensify the Southern captivity of the GOP, thereby making it harder for Republicans to broaden their appeal and win back the White House.



  1. Neftali

    Most liberals, like Joshua Green, are freaking out over this ruling, but it’s much ado about nothing. So what do they expect the GOP to start doing that hasn’t been done already?

    More redistricting? Perhaps. But both sides do this. It’s just politics as usual.

    Stricter voter ID laws? Doubtful. The Supreme Court just recently upheld the provision in the National Voter Registration Act that said photo ID’s weren’t required to register to vote. Further pursuits down this path are pointless.

    The 1965 Voting Rights Act was probably necessary for its time, even if it’s Constitutionally questionable. Today it has achieved the desired intent, as seen by the following chart showing percentages of the gap in voter registration between whites and blacks in 1965 vs. 2004.


    The point is, despite liberal fears, we are not going to regress back to 1964. The only thing we will see the GOP working on in the future is ensuring more minorities use their head and vote Republican.

  2. Nef,

    Your comment is a tacit admission that the GOP has – and would – push the limits of consitutionality to discourage a subset of citizens from voting. COTUS has just made it too hard for the GOP to accomplish (for now).

    Proof, plain and simple, why we still need a Voting Rights Act.

  3. Correction… SCOTUS

  4. Neftali

    No Luke.

    I hate the practice of redistricting. Both Republicans and Democrats do it and it needs to stop.

    As far as the National Voting Registration Act (NVRA) goes, it never made any sense. All you have to do to register to vote is just show up and just check a little box that you swear what you are filling out is true. Where is the safeguard in that? If anything, it’s the Democrats that are encouraging voter fraud more than the Republicans. Republicans just want proof that you are who you claim to be. There is absolutely no harm in that. Besides, like I said earlier all this a mute point now anyway.

    So there is no need for the Voting Rights Act (VRA). It no longer serves a purpose. The number of minority voters registering to vote is not going to decrease. Just watch.

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