Though President Joe Biden publicly decried a Thursday decision by the U.S. Supreme Court upholding a pair of Republican-backed voting provisions in Arizona, his angry stance runs counter to statements from his own administration’s lawyers, who declared that the laws did not in fact violate the Voting Rights Act, according to the Daily Wire.
By a vote of 6-3, the high court upheld two contested Arizona laws, one of requiring election officials to discard ballots case in the wrong precinct and one making ballot harvesting – the practice of collecting and delivering other voters’ ballots – a felony in the state.
In response, Biden railed that the court had “now done severe damage to two of the most important provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965,” and declared that the decision necessitated a doubling down in “the fight for the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act” in Congress.
Saying he was “deeply disappointed” in the outcome “that undercuts the Voting Rights Act” and facilitates “what Justice [Elena] Kagan called ‘a significant race-based disparity in voting opportunities,’” according to The Hill. Biden used the decision as a springboard for further politicization of the issue.
According to the president, while the court’s ruling was a serious blow, it remains possible for Congress to “repair the damage done” by passing the Democrat-backed legislative proposals, adding “Democracy is on the line. We can do this together.”
Despite Biden’s posturing, a number of commentators pointed out the inconvenient fact that administration attorneys had already confirmed to the high court that the disputed Arizona laws did not undermine the Voting Rights Act.
Carrie Severino of the Judicial Crisis Network conservative advocacy group made the point on Twitter, highlighting a portion of the opinion in the case which revealed, “The Department [of Justice] informed us, however, that it did not disagree with its prior conclusion that the two provisions of Arizona law at issue in these cases do not violate §2 of the Voting Rights Act.”
Former Acting Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security and former Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli also emphasized the absurdity of Biden’s argument, saying “Hey @JoeBiden, your own #DOJ agreed that the AZ laws didn’t discriminate in Feb, but only said they would reach that decision a different way!”
As is all too often the case, when it comes to stoking the flames of racial division on matters related to voting rights, Biden has once again revealed himself to be shamefully unbothered by the facts.