"Integrity, Equality, and the Fragility of the Right to Vote" CLE
Presented by Professor Atiba Ellis, Marquette University Law School in partnership with the Tallahassee Barristers Association
The Tallahassee Women Lawyers and Tallahassee Barristers Association are proud to announce their upcoming CLE presentation. On September 10, 2020, at noon via GoToMeeting, Professor Atiba Ellis, Marquette University Law School, will be discussing “Integrity, Equality, and the Fragility of the Right to Vote.” Professor Ellis’ primary research focuses on how racial and class-based oppression continue to abridge and deny the right to vote to communities on the margins of American democracy. At the heart of the modern battles over the American right to vote is a tension between two constitutional values. On the one hand, from the colonial era and the original U.S. Constitution to today, states have used their autonomy to shape the right to vote around notions of status, wealth, and race—a definition that excluded many in the name of maintaining “election integrity.” On the other hand, from the passage of the Fifteenth and Nineteenth Amendments and ultimately, the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and other statutes, an equality-driven view of a universalist right to vote has emerged. This presentation will offer perspectives on this competition of values within the right-to-vote context and describe how these tensions play out in the modern-day voter suppression debates.