Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter released a statement Tuesday regarding the Supreme Court's decision to overturn a portion of the 1965 Voting Rights Act that requires states with a history of discrimination to gain federal approval of all voting law changes.
"The Supreme Court’s decision today is a disheartening turn in the fight for a fair and equal voting process for every American citizen," Nutter said.
"For decades, the right to vote has been protected and voting discrimination limited because of the Voting Rights Act.
"The Supreme Court’s ruling will diminish the protections that have been passed and renewed with bipartisan support. I want to thank President Barack Obama for calling Congress to action on this disappointing decision to ensure that every citizen’s voice and vote is heard."
Though Pennsylvania is not one of the states whose voting laws previously required federal approval under the Voting Rights Act, last year's push to pass a law requiring all voters to present photo ID – a battle that will be taken up again in Commonwealth Court on July 15 – sparked legal challenges from residents who claimed the provision would be an affront to their civil rights.