“I thought you must not know what’s happening in this country,” Victor wrote. “After learning more this year from the civil rights group, Advancement Project, I know that just as there were for me, there are barriers to voting for many people – especially people who are black or brown.”
Obama pointed to Victor, who waited in line for hours to vote at a polling place in Miami, as an example of why it was important to fix the nation’s broken election system.
“I was born at a time when women were not allowed to vote in Haiti, nor the United States,” she continued. “After becoming a U.S. citizen, I was so proud to have a voice in this country. That is what inspired me to fight last year. But voting should never require such a fight. We need more make sure that all Americans can have their voices heard – we need the Voting Rights Act. Justice Scalia, the Voting Rights Act is not a racial entitlement. It is an important protection that helps all Americans exercise their right to vote. It was put in place because, sadly, there are people in this country who don’t want everyone to have an equal voice at the ballot box.
Victor mentioned in the quote is the 102-year-old voter who stood in line for four hours in order to vote in the last election. She couldn’t understand how Supreme Court Justice Scalia takes such a wrong-headed view of the voting rights act. We all know that Justice Scalia is an ultra-conservative who aligns with the Reagan view of “government being the problem” mantra but surely he sees voting as a fundamental right of all citizens. It should be protected and defended at every turn. With the current attempts by some of the States to stifle the vote the voting rights act should be on the Supreme Courts agenda every year. Not to abolish it but to enforce it.