Democrats on Thursday expressed their displeasure with the Supreme Court’s final decisions of its 2020-2021 term, accusing the justices of doing “severe damage” to the political system and in some cases re-upping their calls to pack the court with liberal justices appointed by President Biden.
One decision was on a challenge to Arizona election laws, including a ban on ballot harvesting. The other was about a California law that required nonprofits to disclose their largest donors to the state government for law enforcement purposes.
The court upheld the Arizona laws – which liberals saw as voting rights restrictions and conservatives saw as election security measures – and struck down the California law on the grounds that it chilled free speech.
Biden weighed in on the Arizona decision in a statement that was remarkably critical of the Supreme Court for a sitting president.
“I am deeply disappointed in today’s decision by the United States Supreme Court that undercuts the Voting Rights Act,” Biden said. “In a span of just eight years, the Court has now done severe damage to two of the most important provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 – a law that took years of struggle and strife to secure.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said the court’s decision in the Arizona case is part of an “unprecedented assault on voting rights” from the court before also tearing into the court over the California case.
“The decision in Americans for Prosperity further harms our democracy by allowing the suffocation of the airwaves caused by big dark special interest money,” Pelosi said. “This torrent of dark money silences the voices of voters and prevents passage of commonsense, bipartisan and popular legislation – from gun violence prevention to climate action to LGBTQ equality. It is fundamentally anti-democratic, and it cannot go unanswered.”
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