October 11, 2011
Below is a statement from Howard Simon, Executive Director of the ACLU of Florida regarding today’s announcement that Governor Rick Scott and Secretary of State Kurt Browning will ask a judge to set aside the 1964 Voting Rights Act in Florida:
“The Governor’s taxpayer funded legal shenanigans continue – now seeking to set aside landmark federal civil rights legislation that protects racial and language minorities in Florida. The Voting Rights Act was designed and passed expressly to prevent states from undermining voting rights of minorities – which is exactly what Florida is doing.
“Scott and Browning have made it clear that they prefer to fight to suppress the vote than follow landmark civil rights laws. At least now it’s official.
“Today they’ve essentially asked a court to allow them not to follow federal law. It’s an admission that they know that the federal courts are likely to find that the Voter Suppression Act passed this year is a serious threat to the voting rights of Florida’s language and racial minorities.
“It’s also confusing and contradictory that the Governor and Secretary of State are blaming the Voting Rights Act for a delay when they themselves have dragged out the required review of the Voter Suppression Act by deciding to block an approval process which was nearly complete and instead pursue separate legal action.
“We remain confident that any objective analysis of Florida’s most recent voter suppression tactics will be found to weaken minority voting rights and therefore be in violation of the important Voting Rights Act protections.”
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