A New Proposal to Address Local Voting Discrimination

Cody Gray *

Lorna Francis is an African American woman who lives in Conyers, Georgia, a quiet city southeast of Atlanta.[1] She is a hairdresser and single mother, and has little time for anything else.[2] Politics is something of an afterthought for Lorna: “Life’s been busy—I’ve been trying to make that money.”[3] So she was not surprised to learn she had missed the most recent mayoral election: “[H]onestly, I only vote in major elections.”[4]

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*     Ph.D., 2015, Politics, Princeton University; J.D., 2015, Harvard Law School. I thank Chuck Cameron, Jeanne Charn, Susan Davies, Paul Frymer, Claire Johnson, J. Morgan Kousser, Uzoma Nkwonta, Susannah Barton Tobin, Keith Whittington, and seminar participants at Harvard Law School for advice. All errors are my own.

[1].    The proceeding discussion is adapted from Richard Fausset’s helpful description of Conyers. See Richard Fausset, Mostly Black Cities, Mostly White City Halls, N.Y. Times, Sept. 29, 2014, at A1.

[2].    Id.

[3].    Id.

[4].    See id.