It’s bad enough that an outrage was perpetrated last week against the voters of Maricopa County, Arizona. It would be far worse if we ignore the warning that the disenfranchisement of thousands of its citizens offers our nation.
In November, one of the most contentious campaigns in our history could end in a catastrophe for our democracy.
A major culprit would be the United States Supreme Court, and specifically the conservative majority that gutted the Voting Rights Act in 2013. The facts of what happened in Arizona’s presidential primary are gradually penetrating the nation’s consciousness. In a move rationalized as an attempt to save money, officials of Maricopa County, the state’s most populous, cut the number of polling places by 70 percent, from 200 in the last election to 60 this time.
Maricopa includes Phoenix, the state’s largest city, which happens to have a non-white majority and is a Democratic island in an otherwise Republican county.