Poll: Americans don't like decision on Voting Rights Act

51 percent say they disapprove of the Supreme Court's decision to effectively halt the law

By Jillian Rayfield
Published July 3, 2013 1:50PM (EDT)

The majority of Americans say they disapprove of the Supreme Court's decision to effectively halt the Voting Rights Act, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll.

From ABC News:

Americans across racial groups are critical of the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Voting Rights Act, with disapproval of the decision exceeding approval by 15 percentage points among whites as well as by a vast 45-point margin among African-Americans.

Overall, just 33 percent of Americans approve of the ruling dismantling a key element of the voting law, while 51 percent disapprove (leaving 15 percent unsure). Among blacks, disapproval of the ruling soars to 71 percent in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll.

In a decision handed down last week, the Supreme Court struck down Section 4 of the VRA, which establishes a formula to determine which areas of the country with a history of racial discrimination at the polls must get preclearance from the Department of Justice before making changes to their voting laws. Though the Court left in place Section 5 of the law, which subjects those areas to preclearance, without Section 4 that part of the law is inoperable until (and if) Congress passes a new formula.

Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at jrayfield@salon.com.

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John Roberts Racial Discrimination Supreme Court Voter Suppression Voting Rights Voting Rights Act