Supreme Court voting rights ruling stuns minority voters, who hope it expands their representation
WASHINGTON This week's Supreme Court decision ordering Alabama to redraw its congressional districts was seen by many minority lawmakers and voting rights activists as a stunning victory with the potential to become a major stepping stone for undoing political maps that dilute the strength of communities of color.
Hank Sanders, a former Alabama state lawmaker who has long been politically active in the state, knew there would be a decision since the court heard arguments in the case last fall. He was not anticipating being happy with the outcome, given that previous rulings of the conservative-leaning court had essentially gutted some of its most important provisions.
I was afraid they were going to go ahead and wipe out section 2," he said, referring to the part of the Voting Rights Act at stake in the Alabama case.
He was at his law office Thursday in Selma, scene of one of the most pivotal moments in the Civil Rights Movement, when news of the 5-4 ruling in favor of Alabama's Black voters was announced.