Reprinted with permission from DailyKos
Not only are American corporations readily ignoring Sen. Mitch McConnell's threats to shut their traps about voter suppression laws, now big law firms are getting active in the fight too.
Some 60 major law firms are uniting around an effort "to challenge voter suppression legislation and to support national legislation to protect voting rights and increase voter participation," Brad Karp, chairman of the heavyweight law firm Paul Weiss, told The New York Times.
Though the group has not been formally announced, Karp promised it would "emphatically denounce legislative efforts to make voting harder, not easier, for all eligible voters, by imposing unnecessary obstacles and barriers on the right to vote."
The firms are teaming up with the Brennan Center for Justice, a nonprofit organization that has been tracking Republican legislation across the country, to strategize about which laws to file legal challenges against.
"We plan to challenge any election law that would impose unnecessary barriers on the right to vote and that would disenfranchise underrepresented groups in our country," Karp said. As one might expect, that includes the Georgia law, which has invited a flurry of fallout already for both the state and the Republican lawmakers who passed it.
Michael Waldman, president of the Brennan Center, told the Times the coalition of law firms put lawmakers "on notice" that unconstitutional and legally flawed laws will almost certainly result in legal pushback.
"This is beyond the pale," Waldman said of the GOP suppression laws. "You're hearing that from the business community and you're hearing it from the legal community."
Make no mistake, this is so far from over. On the heels of Major League Baseball pulling its All-Star Game from Georgia to protest the law, creators of the forthcoming Hollywood movie "Emancipation" about a runaway slave announced Monday that they would move production out of the Peach State.
"At this moment in time, the Nation is coming to terms with its history and is attempting to eliminate vestiges of institutional racism to achieve true racial justice," Antoine Fuqua, the movie's director, and actor Will Smith said in a joint statement. "We cannot in good conscience provide economic support to a government that enacts regressive voting laws that are designed to restrict voter access."
But perhaps the biggest development emerging from the rash of GOP voter suppression laws sweeping the nation is the deepening rift between Republicans and the wealthy sector of voters and donors who have traditionally gravitated toward the GOP for decades.
We could be witnessing nothing short of a political realignment that stands to upend American politics as we have known it for more than a generation.