1965 Voting Rights Act. As David Austin Walsh notes at History News Network:
The Voting Rights Act was formulated to target areas with a history
of poll tests and historically low registration and turnout for federal
oversight. Jurisdictions that fall under the Act's authority are
required to pre-clear changes in local election laws with the federal
Section 4 determined the mechanism of determining the
target areas; Section 5 of the Act, which provides for the actual
pre-clearance requirement itself, was not ruled upon by the Court.
In his majority opinion Chief Justice John Roberts wrote“today the nation is no longer divided along those lines, yet the Voting Rights Act continues to treat it as if it were.”
Currently, nine states -- Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana,
Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia -- are subject to
federal oversight; individual counties and/or municipalities in
California, Florida, Maryland, New York, and North Carolina are also
covered by the Act.
Historians have weighed in:
Eric Foner of Columbia University thinks the decision gives a 'green light to states with a long history of slavery and racism" to disenfranchise voters."
Clayborne Carson of Stanford opposes the Court decision, especially since Congress, in 2006, voted to renew the act for 25 more years.
H.W. Brands of the University of Texas supports Chief Justice John Roberts's majority decision.
Read the article here.