Attorney General Eric Holder is suing Texas to block its voter ID law. PHOTO: Reuters
Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Department of Justice is suing the state of Texas over their voter ID law, alleging essentially that Texas’ voter law purposefully makes it harder for minorities to vote. Texas acted quickly to change its requirements to vote to make them more stringent shortly after the Supreme Court struck down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, which had required Texas to pre-clear any changes to election law with the Department of Justice to ensure that proposed changes did not specifically harm minorities.
"We will not allow the Supreme Court’s recent decision to be interpreted as open season for states to pursue measures that suppress voting rights," said Holder.
Holder had intimated that he could sue Texas if the Department of Justice saw evidence for potential discrimination, and today’s announcement shows that Holder believes that he has a strong case for intentional discrimination.
Texas Governor Rick Perry responded angrily:
“The filing of endless litigation in an effort to obstruct the will of the people of Texas is what we have come to expect from Attorney General Eric Holder and President Obama. We will continue to defend the integrity of our elections against the administration’s blatant disregard for the Tenth Amendment.”
It’s far from clear that the people of Texas want it to be harder to vote, and the tenth amendment does not say that the federal government cannot sue a state that is breaking the law.
Texas may just be the beginning. North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory just signed the most draconian voting law since the Voting Rights Act passed in 1965. One has to think that Holder has North Carolina in his sights after Texas.