More than 5,000 people followed Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma’s annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee. The event commemorates the “Bloody Sunday” beating of voting rights marchers — including a young Lewis — by state troopers as they began a march to Montgomery in March 1965. The 50-mile march prompted Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act that struck down impediments to voting by African-Americans and ended all-white rule in the South. – Biden Leads Re-enactment of Voting Rights March
THE PHOTO was taken earlier on Sunday in Selma, Alabama, where V.P. Joe Biden, as well as Attorney General Eric Holder made remarks.
“For our nation’s Department of Justice, the fair and vigorous enforcement of this and other vital protections — and their defense against all Constitutional challenges — constitutes a top priority,” read Attorney General Eric Holder’s prepared remarks for a speech he was set to give at the Edmund Pettus Bridge Crossing Jubilee. “Let me be clear: although our nation has indeed changed, although the South is far different now, and although progress has indeed been made, we are not yet at the point where the most vital part of the Voting Rights Act can be deemed unnecessary. The struggle for voting rights for all Americans must continue — and it will.” – Sam Stein, Huffington Post
Referring to the Voting Rights act, the Rev. Al Sharpton said: “We are not here for a commemoration. We are here for a continuation.”
The Supreme Court is weighing Shelby County’s challenge to a portion of the law that requires states with a history of racial discrimination, mostly in the Deep South, to get approval from the Justice Department before implementing any changes in election laws. That includes everything from new voting districts to voter ID laws.