But civil rights lawyers like Judith Browne Dianis, Co-Director of the Advancement Project, said the law is still needed to protect voting rights today. She said that while the law has blocked more than 1,500 discriminatory laws since 1965, it was used five times last year alone to block laws that would have unfairly blocked minority voter participation.
“Voting is the time we should all be equal,” Browne Dianis said.
Gihan Perera, Executive Director of Florida New Majority, which works on minority voting issues in the Sunshine State, said conservative state lawmakers had been blocked from passing a law to reduce assistance for foreign language speakers, thanks to Section 4 of the law. “Now we are deeply concerned,” Perera said.
Rev. William J. Barber, president of the North Carolina NAACP, said the Supreme Court majority that gutted the law “ruled against all voters of color.”
Barber added that the court majority was working in concert with conservative lawmakers around the country to make it easier for states to pass local laws to restrict minority voting.
“They think they are going full speed ahead but now we are going to see a fast rush backward,” Barber said. “This is a direct attack on minority voting power.”