Tyson King-Meadows, Political Science and Africana Studies, on Facing South

Tyson King-MeadowsIn “Why the 2014 Election Matters for Voting Rights,” the online magazine Facing South delves into analysis by UMBC’s Tyson King-Meadows on last week’s CBC Annual Legislative Conference panel “Protecting the Right to Vote.” King-Meadows is associate professor of political science and chair of Africana studies.

The panel discussed voting rights issues in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent invalidation of Section Five of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA). In his remarks, King-Meadows described two ways the VRA’s influence could shrink further, including underfunding for the attorneys who address claims relating to voter rights and appointing people who are hostile to the VRA’s tenets to roles in the Department of Justice (DOJ) or federal courts.

“Let me give you a number: 684,” said Kings-Meadows. “That’s the number of non-competitive appointments in the DOJ alone.”

King-Meadows suggested that means an individual who is antagonistic toward the VRA could direct Justice staff to interpret the law in ways that could lead to further weakening of its powers, “or simply ignore meritorious complaints that come in,” Facing South notes. Read the full analysis on Facing South.