While polling place cutbacks are on the rise across the country, including in some Democratic-run areas, the South’s history of racial discrimination has made the region a focus of concern for voting rights advocates.
Activists see the voting place reductions as another front in the fight over Republican-sponsored statewide voting laws such as stricter ID requirements that disproportionately affect minority and poorer voters who tend to vote for the Democratic Party.
Several of these have recently been struck down by courts that ruled they were designed to hinder minority voting.
“There is a history in those states of using different strategies to cut voting in minority communities,” said Leah Aden, senior counsel at the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Legal Defense and Education Fund.
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