Scalia: Voting Rights Act Is ‘Perpetuation Of Racial Entitlement’
By Nicole Flatow and Ian Millhiser, Think Progress
Feb 27, 2013 at 11:52 am
The problem here, however, is suggested by the comment I made earlier, that the initial enactment of this legislation in a – in a time when the need for it was so much more abundantly clear was – in the Senate, there – it was double-digits against it. And that was only a 5-year term.
Then, it is reenacted 5 years later, again for a 5-year term. Double-digits against it in the Senate. Then it was reenacted for 7 years. Single digits against it. Then enacted for 25 years, 8 Senate votes against it. And this last enactment, not a single vote in the Senate against it. And the House is pretty much the same. Now, I don’t think that’s attributable to the fact that it is so much clearer now that we need this. I think it is attributable, very likely attributable, to a phenomenon that is called perpetuation of racial entitlement. It’s been written about. Whenever a society adopts racial entitlements, it is very difficult to get out of them through the normal political processes.
I don’t think there is anything to be gained by any Senator to vote against continuation of this act. And I am fairly confident it will be reenacted in perpetuity unless – unless a court can say it does not comport with the Constitution. You have to show, when you are treating different States differently, that there’s a good reason for it.
That’s the – that’s the concern that those of us who – who have some questions about this statute have. It’s – it’s a concern that this is not the kind of a question you can leave to Congress. There are certain districts in the House that are black districts by law just about now. And even the Virginia Senators, they have no interest in voting against this. The State government is not their government, and they are going to lose – they are going to lose votes if they do not reenact the Voting Rights Act.
Even the name of it is wonderful: The Voting Rights Act. Who is going to vote against that in the future?
Massachusetts official challenges Chief Justice Roberts’ claim about voting
By Akilah Johnson, Boston Globe Staff
February 28, 2013
“Do you know which state has the worst ratio of white voter turnout to African-American voter turnout?” Roberts asked Donald Verrilli Jr., solicitor general for the Department of Justice, during Wednesday’s arguments.
“I do not know that,” Verrilli answered.
“Massachusetts,” Roberts responded, adding that even Mississippi has a narrower gap.
Roberts later asked if Verrilli knew which state has the greatest disparity in registration. Again, Roberts said it was Massachusetts.
The problem is, Roberts is woefully wrong on those points, according to Massachusetts Secretary of State William F. Galvin, who on Thursday branded Roberts’s assertion a slur and made a declaration of his own. “I’m calling him out,” Galvin said.
Galvin was not alone in his view. Academics and Massachusetts politicians said that Roberts appeared to be misguided. A Supreme Court spokeswoman declined to offer supporting evidence of Roberts’s view, referring a reporter to the court transcript.