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Civil Rights Summit Underscores Why Courts Matter

At this week's Civil Rights Summit marking the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, President Bill Clinton reminded everyone why courts matter.

The progress made by the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act is under attack by conservatives who are determined to take away voting rights for political gain. In Texas, that means opposing the bipartisan plan to restore the Voting Rights Act and deliberately delaying the nomination of justices to Texas's federal courts.

President Bill Clinton, speaking at the summit, undescored the important role courts play in the process:

Clinton spent much of his speech addressing last year's U.S. Supreme Court ruling that struck down key provisions of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which was also signed into law by Johnson. The ruling allows several states with a history of discriminatory voting laws, mostly in the south, to change election laws without federal approval.

Clinton noted laws in at least 10 states that require voters to present photo identification to cast ballots.

"We all know what this is about. This is a way of restricting a franchise after 50 years of expanding it," Clinton said. "Is this was Martin Luther King gave his life for?"

Texas shouldn't secede from the union one judicial vacancy at a time. We need to support qualified judicial nominees that will end our judicial vacancy crisis and, once on the bench, defend the right to vote that was first established for all of us 50 years ago.

Take this action to support our efforts to restore justice to Texas's federal courts.