The Supreme Court’s Voting Rights Decision Is a Poison Chalice for the GOP
Section 5 Covered Jurisdictions
States Covered as a Whole Applicable Date Fed. Register Date
Alabama Nov. 1, 1964 30 FR 9897 Aug. 7, 1965
Alaska Nov. 1, 1972 40 FR 49422 Oct. 22, 1975
Arizona Nov. 1, 1972 40 FR 43746 Sept. 23, 1975
Georgia Nov. 1, 1964 30 FR 9897 Aug. 7, 1965
Louisiana Nov. 1, 1964 30 FR 9897 Aug. 7, 1965
Mississippi Nov. 1, 1964 30 FR 9897 Aug. 7, 1965
South Carolina Nov. 1, 1964 30 FR 9897 Aug. 7, 1965
Texas Nov. 1, 1972 40 FR 43746 Sept. 23, 1975
Virginia Nov. 1, 1964 30 FR 9897 Aug. 7, 1965
See DOJ for the complete list DOJ
On its face, this looks like a big victory for Republicans. Is it really? I suspect it will turn out to be a poisoned chalice. Many of the GOP’s current problems stem from the fact that it is overly beholden to its white, Southern base at a time when the country is rapidly becoming more racially diverse. In order to expand its base of power beyond the House of Representatives, the GOP needs to expand its appeal to minority voters. As the ongoing battle over immigration reform demonstrates, that process is going poorly and looks like it will be very difficult.
The Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a central provision of the Voting Rights Act will make it easier for Republicans to hold and expand their power in those mainly Southern states. That will, in turn, make it easier for them to hold the House. It will also intensify the Southern captivity of the GOP, thereby making it harder for Republicans to broaden their appeal and win back the White House.