By Tharuni Jayaraman
Thursday night was a busy night in the voting rights world. Just before 9:00 PM EST, District Court Judge Ramos, in Veasey v. Perry, enjoined Texas’ photo identification law, SB 14. She held that the law (1) “creates an unconstitutional burden on the right to vote,” (2) has an impermissible discriminatory effect against Hispanics and African-Americans, and (3) was imposed with a discriminatory purpose.” Furthermore, as emphasized by Justin Levitt of Election Law Blog, Judge Ramos will also be considering the plaintiffs’ request for a “bail-in” order under Section 3(c) of the Voting Rights Act. If such an order were issued, Texas would become the first state to be subject to preclearance in the post-Shelby County v. Holder world.
Then, about an hour later, the Supreme Court issued an order vacating the Seventh Circuit’s stay on the district court’s permanent injunction of Wisconsin’s photo identification law. Several scholars, including Volume 8.1 author Richard Hasen, have written excellent analyses of these two decisions. Rather than rehashing their analyses, I hope to demonstrate that Judge Ramos’ decision in Veasey underscores the need for the Voting Rights Amendment Act (VRAA). [Read more…] about Veasey v. Perry & The Voting Rights Amendment Act