State of Elections

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Tag: NAACP

Racial Vote-Dilution Lawsuit Transforms Small Town City Council

By Jeffrey Tyler

A lawsuit brought by the NAACP Legal Defense Fund has finally allowed the Black residents of a small Alabama city to elect their preferred candidates for City Council. Since its incorporation in 1937, Pleasant Grove has not elected a single non-white City Council member – until now. The NAACP’s legal challenge, brought under the Voting Rights Act’s anti-racial-vote-dilution provisions, argued that Pleasant Grove’s “at-large, numbered-place” electoral system violated Section 2 of the Act because Black residents were consistently prevented from electing their preferred candidates.

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An Even More Cynical Form of Gerrymandering for Connecticut

By: Sarah Crowe

In a lawsuit being touted as the “first of its kind”, Connecticut was hit with a federal lawsuit in late June 2018 with the aim of ending the practice of prison gerrymandering. According to the NAACP, prison gerrymandering is “the practice of counting prisoners in the towns where they are incarcerated, rather than at their pre-incarceration address, for the purposes of drawing state legislative district lines. The inmate population in Connecticut is a largely African American and Latino population, and these prisoners disproportionately come from urban centers. The prisons in Connecticut, however, are almost all in rural areas. Though many prisoners have lost their voting rights due to felony convictions, they are still counted as residents where they are incarcerated, inflating the votes of those who live in the rural areas near prisons, who are predominately white.

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