Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee/Arizona Republican Party v. Democratic National Committee (U.S. Supreme Court, 2021)

Civil Liberties

Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 prohibits voting practices and procedures that discriminate on the basis of race, color, or membership in language minority groups. In this case, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that two Arizona election provisions — one that prohibits third-party ballot collection and another that prohibits the counting of out-of-precinct votes — violated Section 2 because of their discriminatory impact on communities of color. The petitioner in this case, the Republican Arizona Attorney General, asked the Supreme Court to reverse the Ninth Circuit decision. ADL joined 52 other organizations on an amicus brief led by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights in support of the Ninth Circuit decision. The brief discusses the vital continuing role of Section 2 to communities of color not just in Arizona but across the nation. It also explains that Section 2 has been a particularly crucial legal tool since the Supreme Court’s gutting of Section 5 and the pre-clearance regime in its 2013 Shelby County v. Holder decision. The brief emphasizes to the Court that Section 2 has a vital continuing role in protecting access to the ballot for marginalized communities and the necessity of remaining vigilant to combat discrimination in voting.