Congressman José E. Serrano announced his profound disagreement with the Supreme Court's decision today to strike down Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act.
"The Voting Rights Act is a key underpinning that ensures our democracy is fair, representative and that voting is free of racial discrimination. Today's decision strikes a blow at the law, and leaves voters with less protection. As a result our democracy is weakened and minority voting strength is undermined. I believe the conservative justices have made a grave error.
"By dismantling the coverage formula for the preclearance requirements of the Voting Rights Act, the Court has essentially thrown out the preclearance requirement itself. This leaves millions of minority voters at risk of discrimination in state and local voting laws, election requirements, and redistricting efforts. Congress must quickly enact a new coverage formula.
"The sad fact is that there continue to be efforts to prevent people from voting based on their race or ethnicity, particularly in those areas under the preclearance formula. Congress developed a comprehensive record of this ongoing conduct when we last debated the Voting Rights Act reauthorization in 2006. That is why we overwhelmingly passed that reauthorization, with the same coverage formula.
"We cannot go backwards in protecting voting rights and ensuring truly representative government. I call on the House to immediately begin working to fix a law that the Supreme Court has needlessly broken."