The League of Women Voters of Wisconsin called the Supreme Court's order "wonderful news and a victory" for Wisconsin voters. "We should be seeking ways to get more citizens to vote in our elections," the League reiterated in a statement, "not to keep them away."
Meanwhile, in Texas, a federal district court struck down that state's strict voter ID law. The Texas voter suppression law allowed voters to cast a ballot only if they produced a Texas driver's license, a US military ID with a photo, a US citizenship certification containing a photo, a US passport, or a license to carry a concealed handgun. Student IDs and social security cards were not considered acceptable forms of identification. In addition to suppressing the votes of people of color, then, the Texas law also suppressed the votes of women, students, and the elderly.
In her decision, Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos, an Obama appointee, wrote that the law "creates an unconstitutional burden on the right to vote, has an impermissible discriminatory effect against Hispanics and African-Americans, and was imposed with an unconstitutional discriminatory purpose." She concluded that the law was tantamount to "an unconstitutional poll tax."
State courts are also being asked to weigh in on voting rights. In Georgia, civil rights groups filed a lawsuit on Friday concerning more than 40,000 voter registration forms that are currently backlogged, some of them filled out and submitted months ago. Many activists are arguing that the backlog is so large that it amounts to an act of voter suppression. The lawsuit requests that a judge order five counties and Georgia's Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp to immediately process the backlogged forms.
"Waiting for the state to act is not an option for us because we have folks who applied back in March and April who have yet to make it onto the rolls," explained Georgia State Representative Stacey Abrams. Abrams also runs the New Georgia Project, a voter registration initiative.
Media Resources: US Supreme Court 10/9/14, 10/8/14; US District Court for the Southern District of Texas 10/9/14; SCOTUS Blog 10/11/14, 10/9/14; Politico, 10/11/14; League of Women Voters of Wisconsin 10/9/14; Feminist Newswire 10/2/14, 5/5/14, 10/22/13; MSNBC 10/9/13
1/27/2016 Taiwan Elects First Woman President - In a landslide victory, the leader of Taiwan's Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Tsai Ing-wen won the country's presidential election, becoming the first woman in Taiwan's history to hold the position.
Emphasizing her party's commitment to maintaining Taiwan's independence from China, Tsai won over young voters eager to usher in a political changing of the guard following some 70 years of dominance by the pro-Chinese unification party, the Kuomintang (KMT), chaired by presidential opponent Eric Chu. . . .