There are parallels that can be drawn to the original Jim Crow laws with the modern laws. “Many who view recent restrictive efforts as attempts at voter suppression often draw parallels to the long history of suppression and demobilization of certain categories of voters” since the same methods used to suppress specific groups from voting have lived on for generations and centuries. Even in the lenses of the public, “such connections are not difficult to make as voter suppression is viewed by many researchers familiar with the history of American elections as a pervasive and consistent feature of U.S. political practice and institutions.” American politics have always centered around creating voting procedures that support political motives. For example, the main point of Gerrymandering, an increasingly common trait in American elections, has been to create districts that marginalize specific voting groups into corners while amplifying minorities. The interests of the common people are thrown out the window and it is the will of the political establishments that makes the final calls.
However, there are clear rewards in making such detailed and meticulous plans. In the Presidential Election of 2000, individual districts in the state of Florida had the opportunity to decide the winner of the election despite Vice-President Al Gore having already won the popular vote by millions against Governor George W. Bush. This was seen again in the Presidential Election of 2016 when Donald Trump won the election in an electoral landslide against Secretary of State Hilary Clinton despite losing the popular vote by millions of votes. With small electoral districts making a big difference, efforts have been made to secure advantages in the smallest regions. “Since the 2012 election, thus far restrictive laws have been passed or proposed by Republicans in Arkansas, Missouri, Montana, and Virginia. Republicans appear undeterred in their pursuit of these restrictive policies and this most recent presidential defeat may only serve to galvanize suppression efforts.” This is why the article’s research indicates that “the racial composition of a state’s residents or active electorate and both the proposal and passage of voter restriction legislation that racial and ethnic minorities as well as Democrats were more likely to experience significantly longer waits.” The effect of this has been made clear as “most infamously in Florida, one study estimates that roughly 200,000 voters were discouraged from voting in the 2012 election due to long lines.” Motivations to win political elections have been influential in changing how to approach voting procedure and with history of American elections suggesting that small details can make or break an entire election, politicians have been sensitive about how to approach the modern Jim Crow laws in the eyes of the public.
History suggests that these Jim Crow laws are here to stay. Even with the abolishment of slavery in the 1860s with the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendment, Jim Crow laws have not been fully removed due to political motivations from historically both the Democratic and Republican Party; while the political standings of the two parties have shifted significantly over the past two centuries, each side has continued to support policies that favor their own voting base, not those that are in the interests of the American people. Given the rise of protests against racial discrimination in 2020, disparities in voting ability will likely stay in the spotlight in American politics. With the Republican loss in the 2020 presidential election followed by a Democratic loss in the key 2021 Virginia gubernatorial election and record-low approval ratings for both President Joe Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris, the stage is once again set for modern Jim Crow policies to stay in order to support party interests, not the people’s interests.