As the nation celebrates the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 this week, a new fight for voting rights has been emerging nationwide – and most prominently in North Carolina. Leadership from the state’s NAACP chapter, legal advocates, and several partner organizations have been engaged in a battle for the voting rights of citizens, which hang in jeopardy by way of an upcoming injunction hearing.
On Monday, the first of the hearings related to the restrictive voting laws in the state will be held at the Middle District Federal Court in Winston-Salem. The North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP, civil rights group Advancement Project, and the law firm of Kirkland and Ellis are mounting a challenge to the measure.
On a media call on Tuesday was N.C. NAACP Chapter President Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II, Advancement Project Co-Director Penda D. Hair, and attorney and North Carolina Central Law School Professor Irv Joyner, where they discussed the changes to the voting laws, which included a shortening of the early voting period by one week, eliminating same day voting registration, and other provisions that disenfranchise voters of color and the poor.
The days of Jim Crow laws are long gone, but the Republican segment of the legislature and North Carolina’s governor claim that voting reform is necessary in the state, even though evidence of fraud is negligent at best. With the largest impact of the voting laws felt by younger voters, especially with the ID requirement, there have been moves made by advocates to support the growing numbers in that demographic.
The changes in the Voting Rights Act’s Section 5 by the Supreme Court last year, which removed the pre-clearance requirement by all states before making voting law changes, led the way for 22 states to make restrictions. Pre-clearance forced jurisdictions to receive federal approval for any changes made to voting laws. Although there was an amendment introduced at the top of the year that would bring back pre-clearance, Congress has stalled on moving it through.
Barber addressed this issue during the media call, stating clearly that pre-clearance is necessary particularly in the South, where the history of voting rights stands at its most controversial. He also mentioned that for the past 61 weeks, he and others in the Forward Together Moral Movement have been galvanized in their fight against the voter suppression bill.
NewsOne asked Barber to elaborate on his statement regarding pre-clearance to which he responded:
“This case shows what the southern legislature are willing to do without pre-clearance. When they know that they can pass a law, and it doesn’t have to be pre-cleared, and it puts the burden of litigation on the people, we can see exactly what they can do. This is not Republicanism, we call it ‘extremism.’ Matter of fact, many Republicans have used many of the laws they’re trying to strike down now. Many of us know extremists believe the only way they can win elections is to suppress the right to vote.”
The Forward Together Moral Movement, made up of 200 partner organizations, will join together in a march 5:30 p.m. at Corpening Plaza. Get more information here.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
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5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
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6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
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7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
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8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
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9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
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10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
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11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
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12. Late nights mornings
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13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
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14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
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15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
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16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
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17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
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18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
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19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
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20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
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21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
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22. Claudia Jordan: ....
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23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
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24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
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25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
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