More Early Reports from Oral Argument

[Apologies if you have trouble getting through.  A link from HuffPo seems to have temporarily overwhelmed the servers.]

Adam Liptak NYT:  A central provision of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 may be in peril, judging from tough questioning on Wednesday from the Supreme Court’s more conservative members. Justice Antonin Scalia called the provision, which requires nine states, mostly in the South, to get federal permission before changing voting procedures, a “perpetuation of racial entitlement.” Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. asked a skeptical question about whether people in the South are more racist than those in the North. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy asked how much longer Alabama must live “under the trusteeship of the United States government.”

Ryan Reilly HuffPo: Justice Antonin Scalia suggested that the continuation of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act represented the “perpetuation of racial entitlement,” saying that lawmakers had only voted to renew the act in 2006 because there wasn’t anything to be gained politically from voting against it. “Even the name of it is wonderful, the Voting Rights Act. Who’s going to vote against that?” Scalia wondered during oral argument in Shelby County v. Holder. He said that the Voting Rights Act had effectively created “black districts by law.”

Sahil Kapur TPM: Oral arguments showed a sharp divide along ideological lines and suggested that the conservative majority is strongly inclined to overturn Section 5 of the half-century-old law.




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