Tue. Apr 23rd, 2024

The turnout gap between white and Black voters is growing, study finds

By 37ci3 Mar2,2024


The turnout gap between white and non-white voters has widened over the past decade. the report was released on Saturday Found from the Brennan Center for Justice — and a major contributor appears to be the Supreme Court decision that weakened the Voting Rights Act.

The report’s findings have prompted fears about the health of American democracy from experts at the Brennan Center, a left-leaning think tank. The right to voteelections, money in politics, gerrymandering, etc.

“It’s simply unacceptable to have a democracy that not only has systematically under-represented voters of color, but where that disparity in participation continues to grow,” Brennan Center vice president for democracy Wendy Weiser told NBC News.

“The magnitude of the racial turnout gap is, I think, troubling and should be troubling to all of us,” Weiser added.

The report found that a growing racial voter gap was partly to blame Supreme CourtThe 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder struck down Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The racial turnout gap “is growing fastest in parts of the country previously covered by Section 5,” the report said.

United States-Suffrage-JUSTICE
Activists hold pro-voting rights signs outside the U.S. Supreme Court on February 27, 2013, as the court prepares to hear Shelby County v. Holder.Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Section 5 was a measure that forced jurisdictions with a history of racial discrimination against black voters to seek congressional approval. Department of Justice for any changes to voting laws or processes.

“The factor that actually emerged as a notable driver of this turnout difference was whether a county had previously been subject to federal oversight under the Voting Rights Act prior to the Shelby County decision,” Weiser said.

He added that new restrictions on voting across the country after the Supreme Court case contribute significantly to the turnout gap.

“We’ve documented a huge increase in restrictive voting laws across the country,” Weiser said. “Enacted laws and voting restrictions … stack up.”

“Standing alone, each restriction can have an impact that is difficult to assess or measure,” he said. “But when they start to accumulate, you can see if they affect the voting process.”

And that effect, the report found, exists not only in the regions previously covered by Section 5, but in the United States.

Across all regions, the racial turnout gap was higher in the 2022 midterm elections than in any midterm election since 2006, the report said.

Between the 2018 and 2022 midterm elections alone, voter turnout increased by 5 percentage points between white and non-white voters and by 8 points between white and black voters, the researchers found.

The report’s co-authors, Kevin Morris and Coryn Grange, emphasized that the number of non-white voters who stay at home has the power to swing elections.

Without the loophole in the 2020 presidential election, they wrote, “nine million more ballots would have been cast — more than the seven million that Joe Biden won the popular vote with.”

“Vacancy is essential to our political system,” they said.

Their research and analysis was based on a database of nearly one billion voting record files across the country, and they believe their analysis is the first of its kind to use such a large data set to measure voter participation rates.

The report urges scholars to continue looking for the best ways to close the racial participation gap, but the main recommendation from the report is to fully restore the Voting Rights Act.

“Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, fully operational, would improve voting policy in areas where racial discrimination remains,” Morris and Grange write.

Their recommendation is one that may be more difficult than it seems.

Although Democrats would promote voting rights and introduce the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Promotion Act in Congress, Republicans have largely stayed out of the bill, arguing that Democratic-backed proposals could lead to fraud.

Still, Weiser said, “I hope — and I don’t expect this in the near future — but there will be Republican support for these reforms in Congress.”

“When we make it harder to vote, it’s not just Democrats who lose votes. These are votes of Democrats, votes of Republicans and independent votes.



Source link

By 37ci3

Related Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *