An expert witness hired by Eric Holder’s Department of Justice testified that North Carolina election law requirements have an adverse impact on black voters because they are less “sophisticated” than white voters and therefore have more difficulty figuring out how to register to vote. Christian Adams has the details.
The requirements that the DOJ’s witness found blacks less able than whites to comply with are (1) registering to vote before the day of the election and (2) voting in the precinct where one lives. Since one needn’t be at all “sophisticated” to comply with either requirement, the DOJ’s witness, who was paid with our tax dollars, must have little regard for African-Americans.
Asked whether terminating the ability to register to vote on the day that someone casts a ballot impacts blacks disproportionately, the DOJ’s witness, Charles Stewart, testified in court that it does. He reasoned that (1) people who register at the last minute “tend to be less sophisticated voters, tend to be less educated voters, tend to be voters who are less attuned to public affairs” and (2) “people who correspond to those factors tend to be African Americans.”
Does the Holder Justice Department really believe that African Americans are less sophisticated voters than whites? Does it really believe they are less attuned than whites to public affairs?
To be sure, blacks vote overwhelmingly in favor of Holder’s party. Other than that, I see no reason to conclude that they are less “sophisticated” and “less attuned to public affairs” than whites.
If a conservative were to so conclude, Eric Holder would be the first to condemn him as a racist. Yet the Holder DOJ is paying a witness to advance this position in a court of law on behalf of the United States of America.
Nor did the DOJ’s disparagement of blacks end here. Stewart went on to testify that “it’s less likely to imagine that these voters [the unsophisticated ones who, according to Stewart, are disproportionately black] would — can figure out or would avail themselves of other forms of registering and voting [besides showing up at the polls and registering].” (emphasis added)
Asked point blank whether “African American voters have less ability to figure out what the rules are for voting,” Stewart responded: “I said African Americans have less education, which leads to an ability to navigate the rules of the game.” I assume he meant that less education leads to an inability to navigate them.
As noted, however, “the rules of the game” at issue here are straightforward. How much education does one need to “navigate” rules that require registering before election day and voting in the precinct where one lives?
Virtually none. To the extent that the “rules of the game” exclude people from voting, they exclude those who don’t pay attention to the rules because they don’t care very much about public affairs.
To assume that African Americans pay disproportionately small amounts of attention to their rights and responsibilities as citizens is to make quite an assumption. It is tantamount to saying that, collectively, African Americans are worse citizens than the rest of us.
Stewart’s position, advanced in court on behalf of the Holder DOJ, is an insult to African Americans, and yet another part of Eric Holder’s disgraceful legacy.