NAACP Statement on Dept. of Justice Decision to Challenge Texas Voter Suppression Laws

(WASHINGTON DC)—  The NAACP released the following statement in response to Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to challenge Texas’s voter suppression laws under the authority of Sec. 2 and 3 of the Voting Rights Act.

From NAACP Texas State Conference President Gary Bledsoe:

"We are simply ecstatic that the Attorney General has decided to join us in a continuing effort to thwart the implementation of a discriminatory redistricting map,” stated NAACP Texas State Conference President Gary Bledsoe.  “Minorities are marginalized in the current map and are given much less political weight because of gerrymandering. Because a bipartisan 3-judge court has already ruled that the base map for the current plan intentionally discriminates against African-Americans and Latinos, we feel that we can prevail.  African-Americans and Latinos comprise nearly 1/2 of Texas adult population but provide the dominant influence in only 1/3 or less of Texas Congressional districts under the interim map.  In the 1960's it was necessary for the United States to come to the aid or minorities in Texas, and sadly it is still necessary."

From NAACP Sr. Director for Voting Rights Jotaka Eaddy:

“Attorney General Holder and the Department of Justice should be applauded for their move to bring Texas into a preclearance provision through federal court action,” stated NAACP Sr. Director for Voting Rights Jotaka Eaddy. “The fact that Texas has moved so quickly to implement election law changes that have been found discriminatory by federal courts flies in the face of democracy.  The DOJ is using every tool within its power to protect voters in Texas.”

“While the DOJ is moving in the right direction, we cannot depend solely on the DOJ and the courts to protect our fundamental right to vote,” continued Eaddy.  “Congress has an authority and obligation to act quickly.  They must restore Sec. 4.”

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Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities.  You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our five “Game Changer” issue areas here.

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