Posted by: Debby Durkee | February 25, 2011

Holder’s Justice will interfere with state redistricting.

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Holder’s Justice will interfere in state redistricting.

Liberals play dirty. They know they don’t have a majority in the country, so they will attempt to win by hook or crook. The latest? Many state legislatures have switched from Democrat majorities to Republican majorities, and redistricting in those states will be happening before the presidential election in 2012. A nifty law renewed for who knows why will be used by Attorney General Eric Holder to get in the way of Republican-dominated redistricting. Any other Justice Department doing this would be highlighted and berated for abuse, but not Obama’s. They plan to accuse Republicans of discrimination. It will affect many southern states and others. This is from Hans Von Spakovsky who writes for National Review Online.

The redistricting process for congressional and state-legislative seats will soon begin in earnest. All redistricting plans must meet the “one person, one vote” equal-protection standard established by the Supreme Court, which means that districts are supposed to be as even in population as possible.

But redistricting also must comply with the Voting Rights Act, and the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division just released its new “Guidance Concerning Redistricting under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.” This guidance, which affects redistricting in all or parts of 16 states, is almost guaranteed to cause problems for Republicans.

When the Voting Rights Act was enacted in 1965, Section 5 was supposed to be a temporary, emergency provision. It prohibits certain jurisdictions from implementing any change in their voting laws unless those changes are pre-cleared by the Justice Department or approved by a three-judge panel in federal court in Washington. This 45-year-old “emergency” provision has been renewed four separate times, most recently in 2006. That renewal gave the section 25 years of new life, despite a complete lack of evidence that the type of systematic discrimination that led to its initial passage still exists. Indeed, Congress even changed the Section 5 legal standard to make it easier for the Justice Department to cause mischief.

And as we see in the new guidance memo, DOJ seems intent on doing just that. Jurisdictions covered under Section 5 — all of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia, and parts of California, Florida, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, and South Dakota — now have the burden of proving that their redistricting plans were adopted “free of any discriminatory purpose” and will not have any “discriminatory effect.”

Historically in U.S. jurisprudence, the government has the burden of proving guilt. But Section 5 has always had a different requirement: The states have to prove they are innocent…

This new standard seems designed to make it easier for Justice attorneys to label covered jurisdictions as racist….Snip —

The guidance also provides a heckler’s veto to any minority state legislator unsatisfied with a new redistricting map; such a legislator can now simply cry “racism,” thereby causing the map to suffer from a fatal Section 5 “discriminatory purpose” defect…

… Republican-drawn plans, meanwhile, will run into a buzz saw of Voting Section opposition based not on the legal standards set forth under Section 5, but on whether the Section’s lawyers think the plan will hurt or help Democratic candidates….  Snip –

The guidance says that if a state submits a plan that’s not (in the opinion of Justice lawyers) as good as the plan concocted internally at Justice, then “the Attorney General will interpose an objection.” In other words, the Justice Department will use its law-enforcement power under the Voting Rights Act to force states to implement the redistricting plans drawn up by the Obama administration, despite the fact that nothing in the law allows them to do this.

The lesson here is that Republican-controlled legislatures that have drawn up redistricting plans that Democrats don’t like would be foolish to submit those plans to the Civil Rights Division for administrative review. Instead, they should go straight to the federal district court in D.C., the alternative procedure set forth in the Voting Rights Act.

States must understand that they cannot expect to get an impartial hearing from this Justice Department…Snip –

The bottom line is this: The Holder Justice Department’s opposition to race-neutral enforcement of the law over the last two years suggests that redistricting may touch off contentious court battles over the rule of law. Unless states opt to bypass DOJ and go straight to federal court, the Left’s effort to exploit the Voting Rights Act for crass political purposes may reach a degree of success once thought unimaginable.

Since this Justice Department and this president aren’t inclined to enforce or defend laws they don’t approve of, we cannot automatically assume that they will be fair in their treatment of the redistricting plans of states that are being run by Republicans. If they can’t steal an election by getting enough dead people to vote, this administration will “win” it by declaring new districts illegal per their “racist” bent. Republicans had better pay close attention to this because this administration is lawless, but they will use the “law” to smack Republicans any way they can. This country is becoming more lawless and more like a banana republic every single day. You think you’ve seen the worst of this leftist in the White House, and then he and his lackeys always top themselves. Read it all here and make sure you send it to your representatives both state and national.

http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/260303/abusing-voting-rights-act-hans-von-spakovsky?page=1

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