In response to the Supreme Court’s decision in the case of Abbott v. Perez, People For the American Way Executive Vice President Marge Baker issued the following statement.
“Today’s narrow 5-4 decision is another instance of the willingness of the conservative majority of the Court to brush aside critical threats to our democracy and the ability of all people to have an equal voice in our government. As Justice Sotomayor pointed out, the Court’s decision allows Texas to use electoral maps that a three judge panel unanimously found to have been drawn in order to perpetuate racial discrimination. And it means that some voters will go to the polls in November with the full understanding that district boundaries have been drawn specifically to minimize their influence.
“Americans simply can’t afford more decisions from narrow-minded elitists on the federal bench that continue to rig the system against historically marginalized communities. Too many people already feel that our government isn’t one created of, by and for the people. Rulings like this one that so clearly allow racism to degrade the power that voters have to make their voices heard make that problem so much worse.
“We also can’t ignore that today’s decision is only possible because Mitch McConnell, with enormous financial support from dark money donors, stole a Supreme Court seat that should have been filled by President Obama. His choice to force a figure like Neil Gorsuch onto the Court by any means necessary continues to further a nasty cycle: more power for big money donors, less for ordinary voters, especially voters of color. In fact, Gorsuch would have gone even further than the majority and immunized redistricting from any review under the Voting Rights Act. It’s a potent reminder that every election—especially this year’s—has profound consequences, and we need to do everything in our power to push back against those who would destroy our democracy to serve their own narrow interests.”
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy.