GIVE US THE BALLOT THE MODERN STRUGGLE FOR VOTING RIGHTS IN AMERICA

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Give Us The Ballot

Author : Ari Berman
ISBN : 9780374711498
Genre : History
File Size : 74.42 MB
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A National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, Nonfiction A New York Times Notable Book of 2015 A Washington Post Notable Nonfiction Book of 2015 A Boston Globe Best Book of 2015 A Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction Book of 2015 An NPR Best Book of 2015 Countless books have been written about the civil rights movement, but far less attention has been paid to what happened after the dramatic passage of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) in 1965 and the turbulent forces it unleashed. Give Us the Ballot tells this story for the first time. In this groundbreaking narrative history, Ari Berman charts both the transformation of American democracy under the VRA and the counterrevolution that has sought to limit voting rights, from 1965 to the present day. The act enfranchised millions of Americans and is widely regarded as the crowning achievement of the civil rights movement. And yet, fifty years later, we are still fighting heated battles over race, representation, and political power, with lawmakers devising new strategies to keep minorities out of the voting booth and with the Supreme Court declaring a key part of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional. Berman brings the struggle over voting rights to life through meticulous archival research, in-depth interviews with major figures in the debate, and incisive on-the-ground reporting. In vivid prose, he takes the reader from the demonstrations of the civil rights era to the halls of Congress to the chambers of the Supreme Court. At this important moment in history, Give Us the Ballot provides new insight into one of the most vital political and civil rights issues of our time.
Category: History

Give Us The Ballot

Author : Ari Berman
ISBN : 9780374158279
Genre : History
File Size : 61.86 MB
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On the fiftieth anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, a riveting and alarming account of the continuing battle over the right to vote The adoption of the landmark Voting Rights Act in 1965 enfranchised millions of Americans and is widely regarded as the crowning achievement of the civil rights movement. And yet fifty years later we are still fighting heated battles over race, representation, and political power--over the right to vote, the central pillar of our democracy. A groundbreaking narrative history of voting rights since 1965, Give Us the Ballottells the story of what happened after the act was passed. Through meticulous archival research, fresh interviews with the leading participants in the ongoing struggle, and incisive on-the-ground reporting, Ari Berman chronicles the transformative impact the act had on American democracy and investigates how the fight over the right to vote has continued in the decades since. From new strategies to keep minorities out of the voting booth, to cynical efforts to limit political representation by gerrymandering electoral districts, to the Supreme Court's recent stunning decision that declared a key part of the Voting Rights Act itself unconstitutional, to the efforts by the Justice Department and grassroots activists to counter these attacks, Berman tells the dramatic story of the pitched contest over the very heart of our democracy. At this important historical moment, Give Us the Ballot brings new insight to one of the most vital political and civil rights issues of our time.
Category: History

Give Us The Ballot

Author : Ari Berman
ISBN : 1250094720
Genre : History
File Size : 81.88 MB
Format : PDF
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A National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, Nonfiction Named a Notable Book of the Year by The New York Times Book Review and The Washington Post Named a Best Book of the Year by NPR, The Boston Globe, and Kirkus Reviews (Best Nonfiction) Countless books have been written about the civil rights movement, but far less attention has been paid to what happened after the dramatic passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1965 and the turbulent forces it unleashed. In this groundbreaking narrative history, Ari Berman charts both the transformation of American democracy under the VRA and the counterrevolution that has sought to limit it from the moment the act was signed into law. The VRA is widely regarded as the crowning achievement of the civil rights movement, and yet—more than fifty years later—the battles over race, representation, and political power continue, as lawmakers devise new strategies to keep minorities out of the voting booth, while the Supreme Court has declared a key part of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional. Through meticulous research, in-depth interviews, and incisive on-the-ground reporting, Give Us the Ballot offers the first comprehensive history of its kind, and provides new insight into one of the most vital political and civil rights issues of our time.
Category: History

Herding Donkeys

Author : Ari Berman
ISBN : 1429977418
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 49.41 MB
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After the 2004 election, the Republican Party held the White House, both houses of Congress, twenty-eight governorships, and a majority of state legislatures. One-party rule, it seemed, was here to stay. Herding Donkeys tells the improbable tale of the grassroots resurgence that transformed the Democratic Party from a lonely minority to a sizable majority. It chronicles the inside story of Howard Dean's visionary yet deeply controversial fifty-state strategy, charting his unpredictable journey from insurgent presidential candidate, to front-running flameout, to chairman and conscience of the Democratic Party in an unexpected third act. Ari Berman reveals how the Obama campaign built upon Dean's strategy when others ridiculed it, expanding the ranks of the party and ultimately laying the groundwork for Obama's historic electoral victory—but also sowing the seeds of dissent that would lead to legislative stalemate and intraparty strife. Revelatory and entertaining, in the vein of Timothy Crouse's The Boys on the Bus and Rick Perlstein's Nixonland, Herding Donkeys combines fresh reportage with a rich and colorful cast of characters. It captures the untold stories of the people and places that reshaped the electoral map, painting a vivid portrait of a shifting country while dissecting the possibility and peril of a new era in American politics.
Category: Political Science

Electoral Dysfunction

Author : Victoria Bassetti
ISBN : 9781595588210
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 34.60 MB
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Imagine a country where the right to vote is not guaranteed by the Constitution, where the candidate with the most votes loses, and where paperwork requirements and bureaucratic bungling disenfranchise millions. You’re living in it. If the consequences weren’t so serious, it would be funny. An eye-opening, fact-filled companion to the forthcoming PBS documentary starring political satirist and commentator Mo Rocca, Electoral Dysfunction illuminates a broad array of issues, including the Founding Fathers’ decision to omit the right to vote from the Constitution—and the legal system’s patchwork response to this omission; the battle over voter ID, voter impersonation, and voter fraud; the foul-ups that plague Election Day, from ballot design to contested recounts; the role of partisan officials in running elections; and the anti-democratic origins and impact of the Electoral College. The book concludes with a prescription for a healthy voting system by Heather Smith, president of Rock the Vote. Published in the run-up to the 2012 election, Electoral Dysfunction is for readers across the political spectrum who want their votes to count.
Category: Political Science

The Fight To Vote

Author : Michael Waldman
ISBN : 9781501116506
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 85.50 MB
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“An important new book” (The Washington Post) on the long struggle to win voting rights for all citizens by the author of The Second Amendment: A Biography and president of The Brennan Center, a legal think tank at NYU. Michael Waldman’s The Second Amendment traced the ongoing argument on gun rights from The Bill of Rights to now. In this “timely contribution to the discussion of a crucial issue” (Kirkus Reviews), Waldman takes a succinct and comprehensive look at an even more crucial struggle: the past and present effort to define and defend government based on “the consent of the governed.” From the writing of the Constitution, and at every step along the way, as Americans sought the right, others have fought to stop them. This is the first book to trace the entire story from the Founders’ debates to today’s restrictions: gerrymandering; voter ID laws; the flood of money unleashed by conservative nonprofit organizations; making voting difficult to the elderly, the poor, and the young, by restricting open polling places. Waldman describes the precedents for these contemporary arguments. The fight, sometimes vicious, has always been at the center of American politics: from counting slaves but not permitting them to vote, to property-less males, then to free Blacks, women, eighteen-year-olds, and the disadvantaged, who were harassed by literacy tests. Now the right to vote is challenged by restrictions on open polling schedules and IDs, plus floods of money. It’s been a raw, rowdy, fierce, and often rollicking struggle for power. The Fight to Vote is “an engaging, concise history…offering many useful reforms that advocates on both sides of the aisle should consider” (The Wall Street Journal).
Category: Political Science

Stealing Democracy

Author : Spencer Overton
ISBN : 0393330931
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 87.81 MB
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A critical analysis of the practice of partisan control over ballot boxes identifies how such practices as voter selection, booth distribution, and district boundary setting are used to manipulate the outcomes of key decisions, suggesting options for the restoration of democratic self-government. Reprint.
Category: Political Science

The Rise And Fall Of The Voting Rights Act

Author : Charles S. Bullock
ISBN : 9780806154411
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 35.62 MB
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On June 25, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its decision in Shelby County v. Holder, invalidating a key provision of voting rights law. The decision—the culmination of an eight-year battle over the power of Congress to regulate state conduct of elections—marked the closing of a chapter in American politics. That chapter had opened a century earlier in the case of Guinn v. United States, which ushered in national efforts to knock down racial barriers to the ballot. A detailed and timely history, The Rise and Fall of the Voting Rights Act analyzes changing legislation and the future of voting rights in the United States. In tracing the development of the Voting Rights Act from its inception, Charles S. Bullock III, Ronald Keith Gaddie, and Justin J. Wert begin by exploring the political and legal aspects of the Jim Crow electoral regime. Detailing both the subsequent struggle to enact the law and its impact, they explain why the Voting Rights Act was necessary. The authors draw on court cases and election data to bring their discussion to the present with an examination of the 2006 revision and renewal of the act, and its role in shaping the southern political environment in the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, when Barack Obama was chosen. Bullock, Gaddie, and Wert go on to closely evaluate the 2013 Shelby County decision, describing how the ideological makeup of the Supreme Court created an appellate environment that made the act ripe for a challenge. Rigorous in its scholarship and thoroughly readable, this book goes beyond history and analysis to provide compelling and much-needed insight into the ways voting rights legislation has shaped the United States. The Rise and Fall of the Voting Rights Act illuminates the historical roots—and the human consequences—of a critical chapter in U.S. legal history.
Category: Political Science

Bending Toward Justice

Author : Gary May
ISBN : 9780465050734
Genre : History
File Size : 56.89 MB
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When the Fifteenth Amendment of 1870 granted African Americans the right to vote, it seemed as if a new era of political equality was at hand. Before long, however, white segregationists across the South counterattacked, driving their black countrymen from the polls through a combination of sheer terror and insidious devices such as complex literacy tests and expensive poll taxes. Most African Americans would remain voiceless for nearly a century more, citizens in name only until the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act secured their access to the ballot. In Bending Toward Justice, celebrated historian Gary May describes how black voters overcame centuries of bigotry to secure and preserve one of their most important rights as American citizens. The struggle that culminated in the passage of the Voting Rights Act was long and torturous, and only succeeded because of the courageous work of local freedom fighters and national civil rights leaders—as well as, ironically, the opposition of Southern segregationists and law enforcement officials, who won public sympathy for the voting rights movement by brutally attacking peaceful demonstrators. But while the Voting Rights Act represented an unqualified victory over such forces of hate, May explains that its achievements remain in jeopardy. Many argue that the 2008 election of President Barack Obama rendered the act obsolete, yet recent years have seen renewed efforts to curb voting rights and deny minorities the act’s hard-won protections. Legal challenges to key sections of the act may soon lead the Supreme Court to declare those protections unconstitutional. A vivid, fast-paced history of this landmark piece of civil rights legislation, Bending Toward Justice offers a dramatic, timely account of the struggle that finally won African Americans the ballot—although, as May shows, the fight for voting rights is by no means over.
Category: History

Ballot Blocked

Author : Jesse H. Rhodes
ISBN : 9781503603530
Genre : Law
File Size : 66.5 MB
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Voting rights are a perennial topic in American politics. Recent elections and the Supreme Court's decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which struck down key enforcement provisions in the Voting Rights Act (VRA), have only placed further emphasis on the debate over voter disenfranchaisement. Over the past five decades, both Democrats and Republicans in Congress have consistently voted to expand the protections offered to vulnerable voters by the Voting Rights Act. And yet, the administration of the VRA has become more fragmented and judicial interpretation of its terms has become much less generous. Why have Republicans consistently adopted administrative and judicial decisions that undermine legislation they repeatedly endorse? Ballot Blocked shows how the divergent trajectories of legislation, administration, and judicial interpretation in voting rights policymaking derive largely from efforts by conservative politicians to narrow the scope of federal enforcement while at the same time preserving their public reputations as supporters of racial equality and minority voting rights. Jesse H. Rhodes argues that conservatives adopt a paradoxical strategy in which they acquiesce to expansive voting rights protections in Congress (where decisions are visible and easily traceable) while simultaneously narrowing the scope of federal enforcement via administrative and judicial maneuvers (which are less visible and harder to trace). Over time, the repeated execution of this strategy has enabled a conservative Supreme Court to exercise preponderant influence over the scope of federal enforcement.
Category: Law