The Voting Rights Act Term Paper
From the eighteenth century, the black population of the United States was barred from voting in the states elections. However, the concerned parties presented an infringement of their rights with their leaders advocating for a change in tact of the regulation. Leaders like Martin Luther King junior took to the streets in protest against the abolishment of the African American population from participating in democratic processes. Their efforts paid off in the1965 election amendment act which allowed them to participate in democratic processes within the states of residence. However, the act laid down structures which have since become sections of interest for both the democrats and the republican populations of the United States.
Section Two, Four, and Five of the Act
The second section of the regulation stipulated that all citizens of the United States are equal and entitled to participate in the electoral process without any form of discrimination. Ethnicity and race were not to be in any way associated with the rights to participate in electoral justice. The section presented any form of prequalification among the citizens of the United States prior to election as illegal and that all the citizens would participate in the due process freely and openly (Laughlin 17). Under the section, any eligibility criterion used by any state government was termed unconstitutional and rendered non effective from the moment.
Section four of the regulations presented a bail out agenda. Under the section, a coverage formula was incorporated which allowed other centers of influence which are not part of the due process to participate in the prequalification. The state and the federal government would chip in according to this section in order to conduct tests regarding suspicion on voter state.
Section five of the act froze all the preexisting voting rights regulations in the states. Any new act was subject to approval of the director of justice. All the states which had enacted regulations and laws pertaining to voter registration and elections were considered null and no effective. The citizens, regardless of the race and gender were entitled to participate freely on the democratic process throughout the United States (Marsha 34). However, the preclearance phase was a temporary measure which lasted for a period of five years.
The voting rights act has since improved the level of participation of all the races in the United States election. However, the competition for the political posts has also increased with tough choices made in these electioneering periods. President Barrack Obama became the first democrat president to emanate from the African American population. The abolishment of the voting restrictions has encouraged openness and transparency in the modes of operations of the United States elections board.
The conservatives have not appreciated the increase in the competition brought by an all-inclusive approach towards election. A few of the republicans feel that the elections restriction act needs to be introduced again in the American philosophy (Bullock, Charles et al 23). The idea has been strongly opposed by the section of the democrats who view the idea as infringing the democratic right of every citizen of the state. The tussle has been dire and decisions have become even harder at the state governments.
Shelby Vs Holder Decision
The decision appreciated the role of the federal government as well as that for the states. However, the case presented clearly the superiority of the federal states in their areas of jurisdiction. The states would enact laws pertaining to their operations as well as the laws regulating the conduct of election. However, the decision was marred with controversy as the states enacted the laws selfishly for personal gains. Congress chipped in for the approval of irregularities in cases which required discrimination from participating in the general election process. In 2014, there was an introduction of voting identities for various states but the same has also been subject to resistance among the citizens of various states.
Senator Jones from Alabama has the rights to make amendments in the election act of his state. However, the decision presents a two way sword for the future of the senator in the political arena. His ambitions for the 2020 elections would be dashed if he made the wrong decision. The African American population and other non-white populations compose a significant population of the states composition and a signing of the amendment would subject them to opposition. The same population are also looking towards his acts in a bid to attempt know what his stand on the issue is. For the future of his political career in Alabama, Senator Jones would be better suited for reelection if he does not consent to the regulation. He is a staunch president Trump supporter, but the decision would create a turn moil within his backyard. The opposition and rebellion that might happen in the case of signing the agreement would be tantamount to a failure in achieving the second term in office by the senator. The decision presents a personal evaluation of the senator and it would serve in his best interest if he does not sign the bill.
Bullock, Charles S., et al. The Rise and Fall of the Voting Rights Act. U of Oklahoma P, 2016.
McDonald, Laughlin. American Indians and the Fight for Equal Voting Rights. U of Oklahoma
Darling, Marsha. The Voting Rights Act of 1965: Race, Voting, and Redistricting. Routledge, 2013.