Here we are at Week #4 in the campaign against this Administration’s pick for the Supreme Court and we must keep up the momentum. The fate of Voting Rights as we know them could rest on Kavanaugh’s appointment. Let’s get ready to MAKE NOISE!
“Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, could determine how the court rules on cases that shape the future of voting rights in the United States. And if his track record is any indication, many Americans could be disenfranchised as a result.
As a judge on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, Kavanaugh voted in 2012 to uphold a South Carolina voter ID law that the Obama administration said would disenfranchise tens of thousands of minority citizens. The Justice Department blocked the law, which required government-issued photo identification to vote, in late 2011 for violating the Voting Rights Act.
From 2011 to 2012, 19 states controlled by Republicans passed laws restricting access to the ballot. These included voter ID laws, cutbacks to early voting, and restrictions on voter registration that disproportionately targeted Democratic constituencies, like voters of color.
South Carolina didn’t present any cases of voter fraud to justify its law, but Kavanaugh wrote that such laws were constitutional despite an absence of evidence of fraud. “We conclude that South Carolina’s goals of preventing voter fraud and increasing electoral confidence are legitimate; those interests cannot be deemed pretextual merely because of an absence of recorded incidents of in-person voter fraud in South Carolina,” he wrote.
Kavanaugh’s opinion suggests that when it comes to voting rights, he would reliably side with the Supreme Court’s conservative majority, which in 2013 gutted the Voting Rights Act, ruling that states with a long history of voting discrimination no longer needed federal government approval for election changes. This year, the court’s conservatives also upheld voter purging in Ohio and racial gerrymandering in Texas.
Voter disenfranchisement could get worse if Kavanaugh is confirmed to the court. Kavanuagh would replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, the court’s frequent swing justice. Chief Justice John Roberts would likely become the new swing justice, and he has tried to weaken the Voting Rights Act since his days as a young lawyer in Ronald Reagan’s Justice Department. With Kavanaugh on the court, the five-member conservative majority will likely uphold new voting restrictions passed by Republican states and could kill the remaining sections of the Voting Rights Act.”
Senators are well within their rights to use whatever tools they can to clarify just how important this vacancy is before anyone decides how to vote or, indeed, decides whether a vote should be taken at all. This is all the more true in light of the way our confirmation process has been grossly abused in recent years, most strikingly when Republicans lawlessly failed to act on Merrick Garland’s appointment to the Court by President Barack Obama.
Contact your senators regarding this most important of all appointments. Strongly urge them to give Kavanaugh’s past record and writings the utmost scrutiny. Urge them to vote “NO” on his confirmation.
Make your voices heard! Tell you senators what needs to be done for our country and our future! Call, write, fax, email, and visit their offices! MAKE NOISE!
Go to their Facebook pages and Twitter feeds to make your voices heard. MAKE NOISE!!!
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp
Sen. John Hoeven
Sen. Tina Smith
Sen. Amy Klobuchar