ICYMI: DOJ Finally Enters Litigation Against Guam's Racially Discriminatory Voting Law

A week ago Tuesday, the Department of Justice finally decided to fight against a blatantly racially discriminatory voting law in Guam, as Hans von Spakovsky described:

I have written numerous updates about the voting-rights lawsuit that Davis, a retired Air Force officer, filed back in 2011 against the territory of Guam . . . . Guam refused to allow Davis, a long-time resident of Guam, to register to vote for a plebiscite on the future of the territory because he is white and not Chamorro, the racial designation given to the natives who originally inhabited Guam.

The personnel changes made by President Trump, including Jeff Sessions as Attorney General and John Gore as Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, were necessary for the Department of Justice to uphold the law and the rule of law:

After Guam lost in March, it appealed the decision to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. On November 28, after eight years of studied indifference, the U.S. Justice Department under Attorney General Jeff Sessions finally did the right thing: It filed an amicus brief in the Ninth Circuit supporting Arnold Davis.  

DOJ’s brief, which was filed by John Gore, the acting assistant attorney general of the Civil Rights Division, argues that “Guam’s plebiscite law intentionally discriminates based on race.” It directly violates Supreme Court precedent set in Rice v. Cayetano, a 2000 decision in which the Court threw out a similar Hawaii law. DOJ points out that the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments both apply to Guam; the fact that it is a territory does not deprive its residents of those constitutional protections. The brief asks the Ninth Circuit to uphold the district court’s decision. . . .

The discriminatory law had been ignored for 8 years by the Obama DOJ because the voters the law discriminated against were the wrong color

The Obama administration refused to enforce federal law barring racial discrimination in voting, housing, employment, and education on a race-neutral basis. The Holder/Lynch Justice Department didn’t care if you were being discriminated against unless you were a member of one of its favored groups, a distinction that does not exist in our anti-discrimination laws. The Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, as well as federal statutes such as the Voting Rights Act and the Fair Housing Act, protect all Americans from racial discrimination.

Because DOJ had abdicated its duty to enforce the laws, this long case to vindicate Mr. Davis' voting rights has been fought by a courageous attorney - RNLA member Christian Adams.  We are grateful that the Sessions Justice Department respects the rule of law and has chosen to support Adams' litigation against this discriminatory law - at last.