In his speech, Holder told the NAACP that the arc of American history has always moved toward expanding the electorate and that “we will simply not allow this era to be the beginning of the reversal of that historic progress.”
The NAACP has launched a campaign against the voter ID laws, and its president, Benjamin Todd Jealous, has compared the fight to the one waged during “Selma and Montgomery times,” a reference to the civil rights movement.
Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday he opposes a new photo ID requirement in Texas elections because it would be harmful to minority voters. Speaking to the NAACP, he said the Justice Department will not allow political pretexts to disenfranchise voters.
North Korea says it had taken into account his “sincere” apology for his alleged crimes against the state.
The country has made tremendous strides, but economic inequalities continue to pose challenges.
More than 400 Syrians were displaced as villagers set fire to their camp.
Government critics say they still face arbitrary detention and arrest despite closure of camps.
Proponents of the Texas voter ID laws say the Obama administration is infringing on states’ rights.
“This is a case about Texas’s proposed implementation of one of the most popular voting reforms of the last 20 years, a common-sense requirement that when you show up to polls to vote, you prove you are who you say you are with a photo ID,” Texas attorney Adam Mortara told the U.S. District Court on Monday.
Keith Ingram, director of the elections division of the Texas secretary of state’s office, testified that there are potentially 50,000 deceased voters on the Texas voter rolls.
“Why would the Department of Justice not want states to remove ineligible felons, ineligible non-citizens and the dead from their voter rolls?” House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) asked Holder during a committee hearing last month. “The administration’s actions aren’t just wrong — they are arrogant, undemocratic and an insult to the rule of law.”
On Tuesday, the second day of the federal trial, the judges heard arguments about the impetus behind the Texas law and how many voters might be disenfranchised by the ID requirement. Justice Department attorney Elizabeth Westfall has said that as many as 1.4 million voters could be affected, but a University of Texas statistician testified that the number of voters without an ID was closer to about 168,000.
The arguments are expected to continue through this week and are being heard by Rosemary Collyer, appointed in 2002 by President George W. Bush; David Tatel, appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1994; and Robert Wilkins, appointed in 2010 by Obama.
Rachel Weiner and special correspondents Lindsey Ruta and Annelise Russell contributed to this report.