Shelby County v. Holder (2013)
Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was removed.
Shelby County, Alabama, was a covered jurisdiction under the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended in 2006 so it had to get preclearance for all voting changes. In 2010, county officials filed a lawsuit against Attorney General Eric Holder, claiming that the preclearance formula and requirements were unconstitutional. A federal district court rejected that claim, as did the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Shelby County appealed to the Supreme Court of the United States
Does the renewal of Section 5 of the Voter Rights Act under the constraints of Section 4(b) exceed Congress' authority under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, and therefore violate the Tenth Amendment and Article Four of the Constitution?
Ruling & Reasoning:
Yes. Ruled the preclearance formula in Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional. The formula was based on outdated evidence and inconsistent with contemporary voting rights practice. Departs from basic principles of constitutional equality because it suspends changes to state election law until they have been precleared by federal authorities. The Act only applies to nine states and, 50 years after the Act was enacted, it's outdated