Judicial intervention in voting rights is not new. "One person, one vote" became the mantra for voting rights advocates after a 1964 Supreme Court decision examining equal representation in legislative districts. The revolutionary Voting Rights Act passed soon after. Leading up to the 2016 elections, legal challenges to restrictive voting laws in several states were abundant. In cases that weren't settled in time for the presidential election, or which didn't fully restore voting rights, the impact on voter turnout was noticeable. Now, ahead of the midterms, we are watching monumental legal challenges unfold. In Florida, an unexpected decision opened the door to voting rights restoration for over 1 million former felons. In Ohio, the practice of purging inactive voters from the rolls has been challenged at the US Supreme Court. And in Pennsylvania, the state Supreme Court declared the current district map unconstitutional, prompting one Republican to call for the impeachment of the Democratic Justices. How did we get here? For decades, politicians have abused their mandate to make "good faith efforts" to protect voting rights by using an exclusionary vision of who should be allowed to vote (clue: their policies disproportionately affect black & brown folks). With enhanced awareness of these practices, advocates are pushing back to make clear we won’t accept cheating in our democracy. No one said democracy would be easy, but shouldn’t we at least get the fundamental part right? Then again, it took us a while to get the whole suffrage for all. We must do infinitely better.

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