Second critics also claim that Section 2 causes racial division on the grounds

Second critics also claim that section 2 causes

This preview shows page 44 - 45 out of 60 pages.

Second, critics also claim that Section 2 causes racial division on the grounds that it gives African-American and Hispanic voters "unprecedented power to insist on methods of voting that will facilitate minority officeholding." i8 9 The implicit assumption here is that Section 2 prevents minority coalition building with other races to get minority representatives elected. This implicit assumption is erroneous. In fact, evidence indicates that the increase in minority representation stemming from Section 2 "has not itself created division but has resulted in greater political and social responsiveness to minority interests and the inclusion of minorities in decisionmaking." 9 0 It is worth noting, as a critic of proportionality has, that "[e]ven if black Americans ... held [political offices in proportion to their percentage of the population] they would be unable to implement their legislative goals without help." 19 1 Ensuring that minorities can participate in the political process does not prevent coalition building after the minority representative has taken office. It would 189 Id. at 193. Thernstrom makes a related criticism that [T]he proper test for electoral exclusion is the presence of legislative seats largely reserved for whites-not legislative seats occupied disproportionately by whites. Disproportionately low officeholding by minorities does not necessarily mean that considerations of race are controlling electoral outcomes, or that the legacy of past discrimination is distorting the entire political process. Whites ... often represent blacks. Id. at 225. Thernstrom's argument is one of "virtual" representation, meaning that minority interests can be represented by whites, and therefore, the call for actual representation of blacks or minorities by a black or minority candidate essentially results in proportional representation. See id. at 231. Thirteen new majority black districts were created under Section 2 following the 1990 elections, all of which elected black candidates. See Press Briefing, supra note 165. Section 2 as amended only creates districts from which minorities can elect representatives of their choice, be they black or white. The fact that blacks then choose to elect black candidates to these offices should not be characterized as anything more than an exercise of choice. See Ronald Brownstein, Minority Quotas In Elections?, L.A. TIMES, Aug. 28, 1991, at Al, A14. Brownstein quotes a white Democratic congressman who represents a minority constituency as saying: "I do not believe you have to be of the exact same ethnic group to do a good job in represent- ing that community. But, in the end, I think it's that community's choice." Id. 190 McDonald, supra note 133, at 79. McDonald notes that a California study of 10 cities in the state found that just the fact of having minority members in government offices "tended to break down polarization and racial stereotyping." Id.; see also infra notes 192, 214, 249 and accompanying text.
Image of page 44
Image of page 45

You've reached the end of your free preview.

Want to read all 60 pages?

  • Fall '15
  • President of the United States

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern

Stuck? We have tutors online 24/7 who can help you get unstuck.
A+ icon
Ask Expert Tutors You can ask You can ask You can ask (will expire )
Answers in as fast as 15 minutes