Close Call for Democracy: Supreme Court Rejects Radical GOP Election Plans
North Carolina State Capitol. Credit: Protect Democracy
Today, the Supreme Court issued a decision that rejects the dangerously anti-democratic “independent state legislature” theory, which argued that state legislatures can engage in partisan gerrymandering and other flagrant voting rights violations, with few checks or balances.
Remember 2020, when election officials in states across the country adjusted to COVID-19 by making it easier to vote, through dropboxes and longer mail-in ballot timelines? “Independent state legislature” theory could have deemed these changes illegal, because they didn’t come from state legislatures — and that’s exactly what the Trump campaign argued in state after state, as they sought to throw out the ballots of millions of voters.
Movement Voter PAC has funded many groups that have fought long and hard to expand access to the ballot and ensure the fair administration of elections. This ruling is a repudiation of one of the most extreme efforts by the far right to circumvent judicial review in their efforts to disenfranchise voters, especially BIPOC voters, and should be celebrated as a win for fair elections.
This ruling is a relief as we gear up for the 2024 elections — essentially, Trump, DeSantis, and MAGA Republicans now have one fewer avenue to subvert democracy — but, with a conservative supermajority on the Supreme Court, it easily could have gone the other way. After all, this same court overturned Roe v. Wade during this same week last year.
This is why it’s more important than ever that we win a progressive, Democratic Trifecta in 2024, so we can enshrine voting rights in federal law — and the single most effective way to win in 2024 is to invest now in local year-round grassroots organizing groups in swing states.
Think of it like this: Every dollar today will yield more votes in 2024 than a dollar a year from now.