The Andrew Goodman Foundation Commends The Supreme Court’s Decision In Allen v. Milligan To Reject Alabama Map That Diluted Black Voters’ Voices

The Andrew Goodman Foundation commends yesterday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in Allen v. Milligan that upheld a lower court’s decision that the state of Alabama had discriminated against Black voters in drawing a new congressional voting map. In 2021’s redistricting cycle, the Alabama state legislature drew a map with only one Black majority district, despite Alabama’s increasing Black voting age population, now 26 percent of the state’s electorate, and historic suppression of Black voters. The Alabama state legislature — and likely other states in the Deep South — must redraw the map, such that it is inclusive and representative of the state’s population. 

Democracy won. Yesterday’s decision not only protects the power of Black voters’ voices in Alabama, but it also reaffirms that the Voting Rights Act of 1965 is still the law of the land. Since 2013, Sections 2 and 5 of the Voting Rights Act — the crowning achievement of the Civil Rights Movement that Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner’s deaths helped to catalyze — have been gutted and anti-voter legislation has been on the rise. Just last year, states enacted 11 anti-voter laws and 12 election interference laws that make it harder to vote and to conduct free and fair elections, demonstrating the importance of strong federal voting rights protections like civil rights leaders and activists of the 1960s intended.

“As young people continue to vote at record-breaking rates, we know these anti-voter attacks are not a coincidence, nor will they subside during the runway to the 2024 election,” says Caroline Smith, The Andrew Goodman Foundation’s Director of Programs. “The precedent of this ruling will extend to Black voters in other Southern states that we know are facing heightened attacks, and will ensure that Black voting power across the country is not only constitutionally protected, but also strengthened. Our Andrew Goodman Ambassadors fight to protect marginalized voters every day, and it’s a significant victory to see that effort echoed by our highest court.”

While The Andrew Goodman Foundation is relieved by the Supreme Court’s decision to protect Black voters’ voices in Alabama, we know that we cannot rest in our fight to protect and expand voting rights across the country. We are more motivated than ever, as the court’s decision proves the continued necessity of voting rights activists like our own Andrew Goodman Ambassadors to organize, advocate, and combat discriminatory policies and laws that seek to restrict voters’ access to the ballot box. We are unwavering in our commitment to dismantle barriers to voting and advocate for federal voting rights legislation that further protects voters and expands voting rights for all Americans. Together, we can build a stronger, more inclusive democracy for generations to come.