Federal Judge Rejects Rep. LaRoque's Voting Rights Lawsuit

A federal judge in Washington D.C. has rejected a lawsuit filed by a Lenoir County legislator seeking to overturn a key section of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Republican Rep. Stephen A. LaRoque and four other Kinston men filed a lawsuit last year claiming that Section 5 of the landmark civil rights law is unconstitutional. The section requires jurisdictions with a history of racial discrimination to seek preapproval from the U.S. Justice Department before making changes in voting procedures.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder exercised his authority to nullify an effort by the group to amend the city's charter to make municipal elections non-partisan. A majority of Kinston residents are black and the group complained straight-ticket voting favors Democrats.

LaRoque filed notice he plans to appeal.

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  • by Diana Muller on Dec 24, 2011 at 09:44 AM
    This lawsuit is a blemish on the good people of North Carolina. Wanting to overturn the Civil Rights Act is a measure of desperation from people who have no good plan for this state or nation--if their ideologies were good, they would not have to restrict anyone's voting rights....but they have a failed and archaic ideology. Rep. La Roque should be removed from all leadership positions in the ASSEMBLY. His financial dealings has been questionable and supposedly being investigated by the Ethics committee...he has money and has hired a high paid lawyer...so I guess the people loose again...no wonder we have people protesting all over this nation....OWS.(occupy wall street)).. is right!!!! ..our government has been taken over by small minds such as S. LaRoque who have big wallets. Shame on voters who re elected this person. LETS DO BETTER NEXT TIME AND ELECT REAL LEADERS,,,NOT BOTTOM FEEDERS.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 26, 2011 at 06:32 AM in reply to Diana Muller
      Thank YOU !
  • by Skeeter Location: Raleigh NC on Dec 24, 2011 at 06:10 AM
    The problem is that Kinston is still under this Act. If not for that, the change would not have been a problem! How many other NC cities are subject to that Act? The people of Kinston voted to make the change, but the Courts so "you can not make the change". Seems that this is being ignored by the Court. When and how does a city no longer have to be "under" this Act? How many and what other cities/towns in North Carolina are "under" this Act?
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 26, 2011 at 06:32 AM in reply to Skeeter
      you call it a problem..There is no problem there ! The problem is with Larouqe wanting to make 2 republian votescount as 4. Not going to work.lol
  • by Anonymous Location: Lenoir Co on Dec 23, 2011 at 10:33 PM
    LaRoque plans on "appealing" yet has argued about expensive lawsuits regarding annexation and it being a waste of taxpayers money. Yet, he creates and then pursues battle after battle that is taxpayer costing. Lest we also forget that his income is from an 8 million dollar pot of taxpayer money - LaRoque is a hypocrit! More so he is grasping for any straw he can for positive press in light of his issues with his non-profits. Finally, one does not hire Joe Chishire if they are not in trouble. So, LaRoque should consider the public, taxpayers and voters and RESIGN now and go away.
  • by Braxton Location: Roanoke Rapids on Dec 23, 2011 at 08:51 PM
    Why does the Kinston area put this man in power? Dumb monkeys shouldn't be politicians. The guy is as crooked as they come and an aggressor against the state's community colleges...which is just weird. I guess that's what you do when you have nothing better to do.
    • reply
      by Hardrock on Dec 25, 2011 at 07:41 PM in reply to Braxton
      And just what do you know about Stephen ? What you read written by a biased group of news writters ? Find something to do yourself other than flapping your jaws when you don't know what you're talking about.
    • reply
      by simpleone on Dec 29, 2011 at 06:36 PM in reply to Braxton
      I know a lot about Mr. LaRoque, have watched his shameless stunts in the GA for years and have personally researched his non-profit skullduggery. If you are truly serious about knowing the truth, take the time and effort to research it for yourself - and then decide for yourself.
  • by WHY??!! Location: USA on Dec 23, 2011 at 06:33 PM
    Why can't we ALL just be Americans? No difference between anybody? Don't we all want the same for our family? Don't we all want to watch out for our own and care for them? Don't we all want our kids to have a better life than we have/had? If so... then why do we have to differiniate? Just wondering??!!
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 23, 2011 at 07:27 PM in reply to WHY??!!
      One word-NO.
    • reply
      by Dennis Holder on Dec 27, 2011 at 12:48 PM in reply to WHY??!!
      Because in reality.We all do not want the same. Some of the people want it to go back when blacks had to step on the bus pay then get off re-entry at the back.They want the schools to be all white/black.They want poor people to not have medical care so when they(rich)go to the doctor they will not have to wait in long lines to get waited on. To be short they want it back to the days when they were in total control and minorities had no voice at all.
  • by voter Location: nc on Dec 23, 2011 at 06:03 PM
    has holder ever done anything of a positive nature?
  • by Anonymous on Dec 23, 2011 at 05:58 PM
    A minority of Kinston residents are white, but the group did not complain straight-ticket voting favors Republicans also.
  • by pete Location: grifton on Dec 23, 2011 at 04:38 PM
    Thankyou Stephen what the dum-o-rats are doing is unlawfull.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 23, 2011 at 06:34 PM in reply to pete
      Yeah right. How much of our tax money is LaRoque tying up in all his lawsuits? LaRoque is no different from any demoCRAP or any republiCAN'T. He got where he is by bashing and belittling people of both parties and telling people what they want to hear. It certainly was not by his own merits. If LaRoque were the man he claims to be. He should step down with all of his crookedness. We need a true honest representative of the GOP in Raleigh. That man is Chris Humphrey.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Dec 23, 2011 at 07:27 PM in reply to
        LaJoke needs to step down before the first investigation and/or indictment.
        • reply
          by Hardrock on Dec 27, 2011 at 11:22 AM in reply to
          If you're looking for a joke look no futher than between your ears.
      • reply
        by BD on Dec 23, 2011 at 08:33 PM in reply to
        You are so right. I am a Republican and I feel this suit is redicules.It has no grounds to be overturned at this time.The fact that there are "more" democrats are in the area than other parties does not call for a change of this law.This is another divide that moves to undermind "democracy". The is nothing that is stopping Republicans from voting.This too is a "partisan movement" by one party.Such nonsense as this man is doing only moves to bring regression to certain groups of people.Spend our money elsewhere.Get some jobs going in our county.
      • reply
        by Rock On! on Dec 24, 2011 at 06:48 AM in reply to
        NO tax dollars are being spent on this. The lawyers are doing it pro-bono because the law is unconstitutional and Section V will be overturned!
        • reply
          by Dave on Dec 25, 2011 at 06:51 AM in reply to Rock On!
          Sorry, while you may not like this law, court after court has upheld its validity in adherence with the U.S. Constitution. If you think this is the first lawsuit to try to get it overturned, I am afraid you are mistaken. Just remember two things: (a) not every law you dislike is unconstitutional and (b) we run a republic, not a dictatorship, which means that laws are created by legislators elected by the people, not singletons and onesy-twosies who get their panties in a bunch over laws and try to sue the government on the grounds of the law being "unconstitutional."
    • reply
      by BD on Dec 23, 2011 at 08:20 PM in reply to pete
      The burden of proof under current Section 5 jurisprudence is on the covered jurisdiction to establish that the proposed change does not have a retrogressive purpose.Please keep in mind that the vote for the Civil rights Bill in the Senate was carried by 94% in favor and the House Republicans 82% in favor of the bill.A proposed voting change must not have the purpose and will not effect of discrimination based on race or color.A propsal must also show change does not have the effect of discriminating against a "language minority group.The burden of proof under,Sct 5 jurisprudence is on the covered jurisdiction to establish proposed change does not have a retrogressive purpose.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 26, 2011 at 06:27 AM in reply to pete
      His salary is paid by Taxes...The more time and expenses he spends on this issue is tax funded. dense people
      • reply
        by Hardrock on Dec 27, 2011 at 11:24 AM in reply to
        Man you're so smart, all politicians salaries are paid by taxes you dummy ! Talk about dense.
        • reply
          by Anonymous on Jan 1, 2012 at 06:35 AM in reply to Hardrock
          Glad you found time to post something intelligent ! The densness is in the people that feel NO TAX money is being spent to back La-la -rouge

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