Read the PDF of our statement here.
Federal Court Finds Texas Intentionally Discriminated Against Hispanic Voters
Late yesterday, a three-judge panel in the Western District of Texas unanimously ruled that the Texas Legislature intentionally deprived Hispanic voters in two Congressional districts of the ability to elect their candidates of choice. Federal judges had previously found that Texas undermined the strength of Black and Latino voters in drawing congressional districts in 2011, but yesterday’s ruling determined that the Legislature’s 2013 redistricting plan “intentionally furthered and continued the existing discrimination” found in 2011. Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF), issued the following statement:
“This is now the fifth decision this year and the seventh time since 2011 that a federal court has found that the state of Texas or a jurisdiction within it discriminated against voters of color. This case, like LDF’s challenge to the state’s intentionally discriminatory voter ID law, demonstrates Texas’s unwillingness to overcome its unconscionable history of voter suppression. While far too many jurisdictions have callously enacted racially discriminatory voting laws, no other place has made a more compelling case for the need to return the Voting Rights Act to its full strength than the state of Texas. Until the VRA’s protections are restored following the U.S. Supreme Court’s devastating Shelby County decision, Texas must be held accountable by what remains of the momentous civil rights bill, and be forced, once again, to seek preapproval for any changes to its voting laws.”
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization and has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.