South Carolina Republican Senator Tim Scott, the first black senator from the South since Reconstruction, was in Selma, Alabama, over the weekend to observe the 50th anniversary of the “Bloody Sunday” march. He told CBS’ Bob Schieffer on Sunday’s Face The Nation that there could have been more progress in improving race relations during the Obama presidency.
I would say that we have had probably a neutral position on progressing from a racial perspective in America over the last few years. We have not made as much progress as some would like to have seen. And if you look at, specifically, the challenges faced by black America, the last six years have been challenging.
Unemployment rate is near 12 percent overall. The poverty rate is near 28 percent. I will tell you that the last six years have not been good for most folks, middle America and down. This has not been a good economy for those of us who live in middle class America and moving down.
Senator Scott agreed with the Supreme Court ruling that it is time to update the formula for determining which states must seek approval to change their voting laws.
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I will tell you that I think that every single American should demand making sure that every other American has the right to vote. I think we’re all on the same page on that. The question is, how do we get there? To specifically punish six Southern states for atrocities that happened forty or fifty years ago without updating that formula seems to be discriminatory in and of itself.
So what I would support is to take a second view of the Voting Rights Act and look at seeing how we can apply it universally to all Americans, every place, and let’s judge people and states based on their performance today and not forty or fifty years ago.
Scott turned his comments to how things have changed in his home state.
Nikki Haley is the governor of South Carolina. She is an Indian-American. I was elected statewide to the United States Senate by the voters of South Carolina and I was first elected to Congress at the home, the start of the Civil War. So there’s no doubt about the fact that there has been amazing progress throughout the South and we should make sure that the formulas that are used do not punish the history of a state, but should represent the present state of affairs.
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h/t: CNS News
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