Vice President Biden faulted the Supreme Court for failing to agree with Strom Thurmond’s final position on the Voting Rights Act, but he cited the passage of a South Carolina voter ID law as proof that the Supreme Court ruled incorrectly.
“That law, today’s decision, upset a well-established practice. the voting rights act has been repeatedly enacted by overwhelming bipartisan majorities of Congress,” Biden said at the outset of a White House event on raising the minimum wage.
“If I’m not mistaken, the last time, Strom Thurmond voted to reauthorize it as well — no, I’m serious.” Thurmond was one of the strongest opponents of desegregation in the 50s and 60s.
Biden then attacked South Carolina’s 2011 voter ID law. “The Justice Department objected to the law at the trial showing that there were 60,000 black voters in the state who would have been denied the right to vote,” he said.
The Supreme Court ruled that Congress has to develop a new formula for deciding which states must receive federal approval to the changes they make in administering elections; the current formula is based on the history of discrimination that existed in the Jim Crow South.
“Because it isn’t fair for Congress to ‘rely simply on the past’ to single out a few state and local governments for unequal treatment ‘based on 40-year-old facts having no logical relationship to the present day,’ the coverage formula cannot stand,” SCOTUSblog explained.