Massachusetts: Secretary of State Galvin challenges Chief Justice Roberts’ claim about voting | Boston.com
Supreme Court Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. certainly sounded authoritative when he made a striking, though unflattering, declaration about Massachusetts as the high court heard arguments over the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which is designed to assure equal access across races to polling booths. “Do you know which state has the worst ratio of white voter turnout to African-American voter turnout?” Roberts asked Donald Verrilli Jr., solicitor general for the Department of Justice, during Wednesday’s arguments. “I do not know that,” Verrilli answered. “Massachusetts,” Roberts responded, adding that even Mississippi has a narrower gap. Roberts later asked if Verrilli knew which state has the greatest disparity in registration. Again, Roberts said it was Massachusetts. The problem is, Roberts is woefully wrong on those points, according to Massachusetts Secretary of State William F. Galvin, who on Thursday branded Roberts’s assertion a slur and made a declaration of his own. “I’m calling him out,” Galvin said.