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Full-Text Articles in Law and Race

Alternative Dispute Resolution For Election Access Issues In A Post-Voting Rights Act Section 5 Landscape, Casey Millburg Aug 2017

Alternative Dispute Resolution For Election Access Issues In A Post-Voting Rights Act Section 5 Landscape, Casey Millburg

Arbitration Law Review

No abstract provided.


Dilution Of The Black Vote: Revisiting The Oppressive Methods Of Voting Rights Restoration For Ex-Felons, Tara A. Jackson Jul 2017

Dilution Of The Black Vote: Revisiting The Oppressive Methods Of Voting Rights Restoration For Ex-Felons, Tara A. Jackson

University of Miami Race & Social Justice Law Review

No abstract provided.


What Impact Is Felony Disenfranchisement Having On Hispanics In Florida?, Angel E. Sanchez Jan 2017

What Impact Is Felony Disenfranchisement Having On Hispanics In Florida?, Angel E. Sanchez

Honors Undergraduate Theses

This research produces original empirical estimates of Hispanics in Florida’s Dept. of Corrections (FDOC) and uses those estimates to measure the impact felony disenfranchisement is having on Hispanics in Florida. Research institutions find that data on Hispanics in the criminal justice system, particularly in Florida, is either lacking or inaccurate. This research addresses this problem by applying an optimal surname list method using Census Bureau data and Bayes Theorem to produce an empirical estimate of Hispanics in FDOC’s data. Using the Hispanic rate derived from the empirical FDOC analysis, the rate of Hispanics in the disenfranchised population is ...


Judicial Diversity After Shelby County V. Holder, William Roth Sep 2014

Judicial Diversity After Shelby County V. Holder, William Roth

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

In 2014, voters in ten of the fifteen states previously covered by the Voting Rights Act ("VRA") preclearance formula-including six of the nine states covered in their entirety-will go to the polls to elect or retain state supreme court justices. Yet despite the endemic underrepresentation of minorities on state benches and the judiciary's traditional role in fighting discrimination, scholars have seemingly paid little attention to how Shelby County v. Holder's suspension of the coverage formula in section 4(b) has left racial minorities vulnerable to retrogressive changes to judicial-election laws. The first election year following Shelby County thus ...


Poll Workers, Election Administration, And The Problem Of Implicit Bias, Antony Page, Michael J. Pitts Jan 2009

Poll Workers, Election Administration, And The Problem Of Implicit Bias, Antony Page, Michael J. Pitts

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Racial bias in election administration-more specifically, in the interaction between poll workers and voters at a polling place on election day-may be implicit, or unconscious. Indeed, the operation of a polling place may present an "optimal" setting for unconscious racial bias. Poll workers sometimes have legal discretion to decide whether or not a prospective voter gets to cast a ballot, and they operate in an environment where they may have to make quick decisions, based on little information, with few concrete incentives for accuracy, and with little opportunity to learn from their errors. Even where the letter of the law ...


Let's Not Jump To Conclusions: Approaching Felon Disenfranchisement Challenges Under The Voting Rights Act, Thomas G. Varnum Jan 2008

Let's Not Jump To Conclusions: Approaching Felon Disenfranchisement Challenges Under The Voting Rights Act, Thomas G. Varnum

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 invalidates voting qualifications that deny the right to vote on account of race or color. This Article confronts a split among the federal appellate courts concerning whether felons may rely on Section 2 when challenging felon disenfranchisement laws. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals allows felon disenfranchisement challenges under Section 2; however, the Second and Eleventh Circuits foresee unconstitutional consequences and thus do not. After discussing the background of voting rights jurisprudence, history of felon disenfranchisement laws, and evolution of Section 2, this Article identifies the points of contention among the ...


Why Counting Votes Doesn't Add Up: A Response To Cox And Miles' Judging The Voting Rights Act, Ellen D. Katz, Anna Baldwin Jan 2008

Why Counting Votes Doesn't Add Up: A Response To Cox And Miles' Judging The Voting Rights Act, Ellen D. Katz, Anna Baldwin

Articles

In Judging the Voting Rights Act, Professors Adam B. Cox and Thomas J. Miles report that judges are more likely to find liability under section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) when they are African American, appointed by a Democratic president, or sit on an appellate panel with a judge who is African American or a Democratic appointee. Cox and Miles posit that their findings “contrast” and “cast doubt” on much of the “conventional wisdom” about the Voting Rights Act, by which they mean the core findings we reported in Documenting Discrimination in Voting: Judicial Findings Under Section 2 ...


The Politics Of Preclearance, Luis Fuentes-Rohwer, Guy-Uriel E. Charles Jan 2007

The Politics Of Preclearance, Luis Fuentes-Rohwer, Guy-Uriel E. Charles

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This Essay examines recent charges of political motivation against the Department of Justice and its enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. These accusations appear well-deserved, on the strength of the Department's recent handling of the Texas redistricting submission and Georgia's voting identification requirement. This Essay reaches two conclusions. First, it is clear that Congress wished to secure its understanding of the Act into the future through its preclearance requirement. Many critics of the voting rights bill worried about the degree of discretion that the legislation accorded the Attorney General. Supporters worried as well, for this degree of discretion ...


The Power Of Observation: The Role Of Federal Observers Under The Voting Rights Act, James Thomas Tucker Jan 2007

The Power Of Observation: The Role Of Federal Observers Under The Voting Rights Act, James Thomas Tucker

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA) is one of the most successful civil rights laws ever enacted. Following its passage, the promise of the Fifteenth Amendment has become a reality for millions of Americans. Black voters in the South register to vote without being subjected to discriminatory tests or devices. Minority citizens can cast ballots free of intimidation and violence. Barriers posed by English-only elections have been removed for many language minority voters. Voters are permitted to receive assistance from the person of their choice. Federal observers play an indispensable role in serving as the eyes and ears of ...


Strict In Theory, Loopy In Fact, Nathaniel Persily Jan 2006

Strict In Theory, Loopy In Fact, Nathaniel Persily

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Most Supreme Court-watchers find the decision in LULAC v. Perry notable for the ground it breaks concerning Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act and the ground it refuses to break on the topic of partisan gerrymandering. I tend to think the Court’s patchwork application of Section 2 to strike down a district on vote dilution grounds is not all that dramatic, nor is its resolution of the partisan gerrymandering claims all that surprising. The truly unprecedented development in the case for me was Justice Scalia’s vote to uphold what he considered a racial classification under the Equal ...


Cultural Compactness, Daniel R. Oritz Jan 2006

Cultural Compactness, Daniel R. Oritz

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The Supreme Court’s opinions in LULAC v. Perry, the Texas redistricting case, confounded expectation. While many believed that the Court would develop the law governing partisan gerrymandering in one direction or another, it did not. As exactly before, such claims are justiciable but there is no law to govern them. In other words, the courthouse doors are open, but until some plaintiff advances a novel theory persuasive to five justices, no claims will succeed. On the other hand, few expected the Court to make any major changes to doctrine under the Voting Rights Act and Shaw v. Reno. But ...


This Way To The Egress And Other Reflections On Partisan Gerrymandering Claims In Light Of Lulac V. Perry, Bernard Grofman Jan 2006

This Way To The Egress And Other Reflections On Partisan Gerrymandering Claims In Light Of Lulac V. Perry, Bernard Grofman

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

After winning control of both houses of the legislature and the governorship, Texas Republicans eventually succeeded in redistricting Texas’s congressional seats in 2003, replacing a 2001 court-drawn plan. LULAC v. Perry reviewed a number of challenges to that second redistricting. The decision deals with a multiplicity of issues, including, most importantly, the standard for violations of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act and the nature of tests for unconstitutional partisan gerrymandering. While there are some clear holdings in the case, several of them reflect different combinations of Justices in the majority and, since there are six different opinions ...


Anthony Kennedy's Blind Quest, Scot Powe, Steve Bickerstaff Jan 2006

Anthony Kennedy's Blind Quest, Scot Powe, Steve Bickerstaff

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

League of United Latin American Citizens [LULAC] v. Perry embraced, in the context of partisan gerrymandering, Felix Frankfurter’s conclusion that the Supreme Court should not enter the political thicket of legislative apportionment. Two years earlier in Vieth v. Jubelirer, the Court split 4–1–4 on the justiciability of partisan gerrymandering. O’Conner and the three conservatives held it was nonjusticiable. Each of the four moderate liberals offered a test showing it was justiciable. Kennedy dissented from the conservatives while simultaneously rejecting each of the four tests offered. He announced he was waiting for a better test. When far ...


Lulac On Partisan Gerrymandering: Some Clarity, More Uncertainty, Richard Briffault Jan 2006

Lulac On Partisan Gerrymandering: Some Clarity, More Uncertainty, Richard Briffault

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

In League of United Latin American Citizens (“LULAC”) v. Perry, the Supreme Court, for the second time in two years, agonized over partisan gerrymandering. LULAC’s rejection of a Democratic challenge to the Texas legislature’s mid-decade pro-Republican congressional redistricting resembles the Court’s 2004 dismissal of a Democratic gerrymandering suit against Pennsylvania’s pro-Republican congressional redistricting plan in Vieth v. Jubelirer. As in Vieth, the Justices wrangled over justiciability, the substantive standard for assessing the constitutionality of partisan gerrymandering claims, and the interplay of justiciability and constitutionality. As in Vieth, the Court was highly fragmented: Vieth produced five separate ...


Self-Defeating Minimalism, Adam B. Cox Jan 2006

Self-Defeating Minimalism, Adam B. Cox

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Everyone wants a piece of Tom DeLay. The former majority leader is under investigation and indictment, and even the Supreme Court threatened last Term to undo one of his signal achievements. In 2003, DeLay orchestrated a highly unusual mid-decade revision of Texas’s congressional map. The revised map was a boon to Republicans, shifting the Texas congressional delegation from 15 Republicans and 17 Democrats to 21 Republicans and 11 Democrats. The map was attacked as an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander and a violation of the Voting Rights Act. When the Supreme Court agreed to hear those challenges in LULAC v. Perry ...


The End Of Preclearance As We Knew It: How The Supreme Court Transformed Section 5 Of The Voting Rights Act, Peyton Mccrary, Christopher Seaman, Richard Valelly Jan 2006

The End Of Preclearance As We Knew It: How The Supreme Court Transformed Section 5 Of The Voting Rights Act, Peyton Mccrary, Christopher Seaman, Richard Valelly

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This Article’s analysis reveals that by the 1990s the intent, or purpose, prong of Section 5 had become the dominant basis for objections to discriminatory voting changes. During that decade an astonishing 43 percent of all objections were, according to this assessment, based on discriminatory purpose alone. Thus, a key issue for Congress in determining how to deal with the preclearance requirement of the Act due to expire in 2007-assuming it seeks to restore the protection of minority voting rights that existed before January 2000-is whether to revise the language of Section 5 so as to restore the long-accepted ...


After Georgia V. Ashcroft: The Primacy Of Proportionality, Felix B. Chang Jan 2005

After Georgia V. Ashcroft: The Primacy Of Proportionality, Felix B. Chang

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This Note argues that the majority in Ashcroft have left courts with an unadministerable standard-not so much for reasons that Justice Souter articulated in his dissent, but rather because the Court provided no guidance on navigating around the myriad of factors in the convoluted totality analyses. In the face of this uncertainty, lower courts will rely increasingly on the proportionality standard of Johnson v. De Grandy, which marked the midpoint in the judicial shift from Justice Brennan's worldview to Justice O'Connor's world-view. Part I examines two cases after Ashcroft which represent different degrees of racial vote dilution ...


Felon Disenfrachisement Laws: Partisan Politics In The Legislatures, Jason Belmont Conn Jan 2005

Felon Disenfrachisement Laws: Partisan Politics In The Legislatures, Jason Belmont Conn

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This examination of the institutional changes to state legislatures, synthesized with an analysis of the handling of felon disenfranchisement laws by state legislatures, presents a troubling realization about the law today: in the twenty-first century, partisan politics moderates decisions about even the most basic and fundamental principles of democracy. This Note suggests that because state legislators follow their party leadership and position, a state's traditional treatment of racial minorities, geographic location, and even ideology are not the strongest indicators of a state's disenfranchisement laws. Rather, partisan politics drives changes to the state laws governing felon voter eligibility.


Resurrecting The White Primary, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2004

Resurrecting The White Primary, Ellen D. Katz

Articles

An unprecedented number of noncompetitive or "safe" electoral districts operate in the United States today. Noncompetitive districts elect officials with more extreme political views and foster more polarized legislatures than do competitive districts. More fundamentally, they inhibit meaningful political participation. That is because participating in an election that is decided before it begins is an empty exercise. Voting in a competitive election is not, even though a single vote will virtually never decide the outcome. What a competitive election offers to each voter is the opportunity to be the coveted swing voter, the one whose support candidates most seek, the ...


Strategic Voting And African-Americans: True Vote, True Representation, True Power For The Black Community, Maxine Burkett Jan 2003

Strategic Voting And African-Americans: True Vote, True Representation, True Power For The Black Community, Maxine Burkett

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

As long as American politics remain securely bound to the two-party system, Blacks will remain a voting block; a block that may shift, but a block nonetheless. And although this appears to be to our strategic disadvantage, allowing conviction to direct us, as well as a deep respect for the intense struggle for the franchise, will forever be a noble posture.


Lowering The Preclearance Hurdle Reno V. Bossier Parish School Board, 120 S. Ct. 866 (2000), Alaina C. Beverly Jan 2000

Lowering The Preclearance Hurdle Reno V. Bossier Parish School Board, 120 S. Ct. 866 (2000), Alaina C. Beverly

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This Case Note examines a recent Supreme Court decision that collapses the purpose and effect prongs of Section 5, effectively lowering the barrier to preclearance for covered jurisdictions. In Reno v. Bossier Parish School Board II the Court determined that Section 5 disallows only voting plans that are enacted with a retrogressive purpose (i.e., with the purpose to "worsen" the position of minority voters). The Court held that Section 5 does not prohibit preclearance of a plan enacted with a discriminatory purpose but without a retrogressive effect. Evidence of a Section 2 violation alone will not be enough to ...


Ua Mau Ke Ea O Ka Aina I Ka Pono:Voting Rights And The Native Hawaiian Sovereignty Plebiscite, Troy M. Yoshino Jan 1998

Ua Mau Ke Ea O Ka Aina I Ka Pono:Voting Rights And The Native Hawaiian Sovereignty Plebiscite, Troy M. Yoshino

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Using the Native Hawaiian Sovereignty Plebiscite to investigate the complex interplay between race, nationalism, and the special purpose district exception, this Note chronicles the development of relevant legal doctrines and the history of the Native Hawaiians' quest for self-government in an attempt to untangle those issues. In doing so, this Note concludes that the Native Hawaiian Sovereignty Plebiscite was an unconstitutional method of securing sovereign rights for Native Hawaiians, but that a Native Hawaiian claim to at least some form of self-government is justified. As a result, this Note searches for a method that will guarantee self-government as well as ...


The Fallacy Of Neutrality: Diary Of An Election Observer, Jeanne M. Woods Jan 1997

The Fallacy Of Neutrality: Diary Of An Election Observer, Jeanne M. Woods

Michigan Journal of International Law

Neutrality is one of many conceptual fictions of liberal discourse. A legal fiction is "contrived by the law" to facilitate adjudication of issues. Such fictions may serve as symbols, to make abstract concepts tangible or, they may be myths designed to promote some normative principle or goal. The problem arises when these fictions cease to be recognized as inventions, or as "presumptions about reality," and are believed to have an independent existence in reality. Then, they "purport to provide us with an objective and impersonal criterion, but they do not." According to the philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre, a fiction is "a ...


Drawing The Line On Incumbency Protection, Sally Dworak-Fisher Jan 1996

Drawing The Line On Incumbency Protection, Sally Dworak-Fisher

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

In an effort to fill the void in scholarly debate and legal analysis, this Note evaluates incumbency protection as a redistricting principle and analyzes its treatment in various court opinions. After arguing that protecting incumbents is not a legitimate redistricting objective, this Note illustrates how the Supreme Court and lower federal courts have been reluctant to pass judgment on incumbency protection. This Note contrasts this "hands-off" approach to the strict scrutiny afforded claims of racial gerrymandering and argues that such an approach enables incumbents to manipulate the Voting Rights Act for their self-interest. Additionally, this Note argues that incumbents, a ...


The Empitness Of Majority Rule, Luis Fuentes-Rohwer Jan 1996

The Empitness Of Majority Rule, Luis Fuentes-Rohwer

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

In this Note, the author steers away from the current substantive debates surrounding the Voting Rights Act, its various amendments, and the "correct" way of interpreting its intended benefits and constitutionally accepted mandates. Instead, indirectly joins the many "radical" voices advocating for a departure from the majoritarian stranglehold-the decision-making process where fifty percent plus one of the voting population carry the election. The author does so not by suggesting yet another mechanism by which representatives may be elected, but by critiquing the perceived underpinnings of our democratic system of government. The author does not profess to delineate a definitive interpretation ...


The Triumph Of Tokenism: The Voting Rights Act And The Theory Of Black Electoral Success, Lani Guinier Mar 1991

The Triumph Of Tokenism: The Voting Rights Act And The Theory Of Black Electoral Success, Lani Guinier

Michigan Law Review

In this article, my goal is to organize the divergent themes of black electoral success strategy within one conceptual framework in order to give the themes more cogency and attention. Having exposed the existence of a coherent theory, I then argue that the theory posits many of the correct goals but fails to provide a realistic mechanism for achieving them. The article proceeds in three Parts. In Part I, I develop the ideological and statutory roots of black electoral success theory. In Part II, I analyze the inadequacies of current voting rights litigation and its failure to realize the statute ...