Deconstructing the Republic: Voting Rights, the Supreme Court, and the Founders’ Republicanism Reconsidered
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Citation of Original PublicationGeorge R. La Noue, DECONSTRUCTING THE REPUBLIC: VOTING RIGHTS, THE SUPREME COURT, AND THE FOUNDERS’ REPUBLICANISM RECONSIDERED,Law and Courts, http://www.lawcourts.org/LPBR/reviews/peacock1108.htm
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In this book, Anthony Peacock, who teaches political science at Utah State University, explores political and legal interpretations of the Voting Rights Acts (VRA) which encourage a kind of multiculturalism or identity politics that he considers destructive to the Founders’ constitutional vision. Thus, the book functions at two levels. First, it is a very useful overview of the implementation of the VRA which was extended by Congress in 2006 for another 25 years. Second, it is a provocative argument about the kind of voting arrangements Peacock believes are consistent with Madisonian Republicanism and the role of the VRA in undermining them. He concludes: “The Founders hoped that the various institutional processes of the national government would involve reasoning on the merits of legislative proposals with a view to protecting individual rights and promoting the general welfare. . . The current VRA – the VRA of second-generation voting rights – requires legislators, judges, and administrators to think in racial terms, to count in racial terms, and to allocate political power in racial terms”