Alabama lawmakers split over Voting Rights Act

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Two Alabama Republicans were among a small group of Southern dissenters Thursday as the House voted overwhelmingly to renew the 1965 Voting Rights Act for another 25 years.

Representatives Terry Everett and Jo Bonner say the act unfairly targets Southern states.

They joined 31 others to oppose extending the which was approved more than 40 years ago to block literacy tests and other tactics commonly used in the South to prevent blacks from voting.

Everett and Bonner say they support the general intent of the law but could not vote to extend it without eliminating provisions holding Southern states to tougher standards as a result of past discriminatory practices.

Everett says the act "remains locked in a time warp reflecting the voting realities of 1964, not 2006."

The delegation's other three Republicans and two Democrats supported the measure, which passed 390-33.

Courtesy: Associated Press