Republicans and the Supreme Court are peeling away voting rights and undermining representative government. Grassroots organizing is the only way to preserve U.S. democracy.

By Adam Eichen, In These Times

The January 6 committee hearings have put into stark relief just how close Donald Trump and his supporters came to overturning the 2020 presidential election. But the insurrection itself was just one part of a broader political trend of our democracy — and its constituent institutions — coming under assault.


The Supreme Court has been an essential part of this anti-democratic story. In recent years, the Court has undermined campaign finance regulations, gutted safeguards to the ballot and given the green light to Republican partisan gerrymanders. Far from slowing down, conservatives on the Court are at it again this year, working to undermine our government supposedly of, by, and for the people. In the face of this onslaught, organizers are pursuing strategies to protect the right to vote at the local and state levels.

This term, the justices on the Supreme Court put two lower court rulings on hold, allowing racial gerrymanders in Alabama and Louisiana to be enacted for the upcoming election in 2022. The radical wing of the Court likewise struck down state legislative maps in Wisconsin for including too many majority-Black districts, and unraveled core civil liberties by overturning Roe v. Wade and curtailing Miranda rights.

In the next judicial term, there will almost certainly be even more destruction. The Supreme Court will hear arguments on whether to let the racial gerrymanders in Alabama and Louisiana remain operative for the entire decade (i.e. they will decide to what degree the Voting Rights Act guards against racial gerrymanders). Should the Court again gut the Voting Rights Act, as it did previously in 2013 and last year, it would represent a code red for the promise of a multi-racial democracy.

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