Alabama Solicitor General John Neiman shares his reactions to Shelby County on SCOTUSblog.
The Presidential Commission on Election Administration was in the Miami area on Friday, where they heard from local officials and advocates about lines at the polls (including their disparate impact on racial and ethnic minorities).
Then, on Saturday, co-chairs Bob Bauer and Ben Ginsberg moved on to Louisville, to meet with local officials at the annual conference of the International Association of Clerks, Recorders, Election Officials and Treasurers. That’s IACREOT, if you’re texting.
A Wisconsin task force recommends moving from unlimited 10-year terms to a single 16-year term for state Supreme Court Justices, to “help restore public confidence in a court whose image has been battered by increasingly savage political campaigns fueled by a rising tide of money.” Story here; task force report here.
The El Paso Times talks redistricting.
John Sides summarizes some of the political science concerning race and voting at the WaPo.
I’d missed this story in Indian Country earlier this week, noting that Shelby County was decided on the anniversary of the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Alaska and several counties in Arizona, North Carolina, and South Dakota (as well as several counties in other states that had bailed out) were covered by the preclearance formula in part because of tribal populations.
The Hill discusses early steps on the “John Lewis Voting Rights Act.”
And CNN has a noncommittal statement on Congressional action from House Judiciary Chair Bob Goodlatte.
This isn’t a news item, but rather a collection of actual literacy tests from the 60s.
This Slate piece linked to this site hosted by the Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement, and their collection of literacy tests. As the Slate snippet notes, many of the literacy tests were ostensibly connected to civics, but I’m particularly intrigued by Louisiana’s mind-teaser version.
(The originals, it always bears repeating, were tools of disenfranchisement rather than “mind-teasers.” I do not mean to belittle the gravity of their deployment by the description. And no, they’re not coming back after Shelby County.)
Chief Justice Roberts, speaking in West Virginia, offered some critique of the Court’s own style during oral argument. Apparently, “Roberts suggested lawyers not even try to respond when the justices posed rapid-fire questions.”
Students: this does not mean you can ignore moot court questions you don’t like.
The Washington Post has this handy infographic on The Nine. Moving the cursor lets you see the percentage of opinions in which each Justice agreed with his or her colleagues. Purely personally, I find it more instructive to “view all opinions” (on the upper left) than the default option of the 5-4 opinions.
Ross Douthat’s latest column follows the “backlash” narrative: if the aftermath of Shelby County sees more laws marginally increasing burdens for some, that will inspire greater compensatory turnout from others.
Two short notes on this argument. First, voters aren’t fungible. Increasing burdens for some is still increasing burdens for some. Second, not all votes are for the presidency. I’ve yet to hear a convincing story about how the backlash narrative works in a small town or a rural county.
Linda Greenhouse offers thoughts on the use of the Court’s cert. power, including Shelby County.
Some of you may have noticed that it’s been something of a busy week in the world of election law (and beyond).
What with trying to keep up with the flood of news and reaction and commentary and speculation here for the 15,000+ of you who stopped by this site over the last week (and all of the rest of you getting Tweets and Facebook posts and Feedburns and updates on the listserv and whatever else you kids are using to read your blogs these days), I haven’t had time to keep my own website up to date.
Well, redistricting fans, you can breathe a bit easier now. All About Redistricting is finally back up to date, reflecting all of the developments of the last week.