Holder seeks to reassert federal power over state voting laws

Daniel Strauss and Mike Lillis
The Hill
July 25, 2013

Attorney General Eric Holder on Thursday said he will seek to require that the state of Texas clear all of its voting changes with the federal government, firing the opening salvo in a new battle over the Voting Rights Act.

“This is the department’s first action to protect voting rights following the Shelby County decision, but it will not be our last, Holder said in Philadelphia, according to prepared remarks.

The Supreme Court last month ruled in Shelby County v. Holder that the voting law’s requirement that states with a history of discrimination clear changes to their polling practices was unconstitutional, putting enforcement of the law in doubt.

But Holder, in a speech on Thursday at the National Urban League, said the Obama administration will try to revive the preclearance system in court.

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