Seminar - 2 hours. This seminar will explore the right to vote under the U.S. Constitution and Voting Rights Act of 1965. The course will explore voter eligibility issues that are brought to light by current social movements such as Black Lives Matter and immigrant rights movements. Students will learn about contemporary voting rights issues including efforts to both expand and suppress the vote; efforts to eliminate noncitizens in the U.S. Census and redistricting processes; and efforts to dilute the vote through redistricting and gerrymandering. Students in the seminar will learn how apportionment, gerrymandering and redistricting are affected by VRA claims; and how current discussions over voting procedures (e.g., mail-in ballots, voter ID laws) affect VRA protections. Students will demonstrate their knowledge through activities such as creating redistricting maps; writing activities about specific policies and procedures; and class participation. This course will be held in conjunction with students from Texas A&M Law School, and will concentrate on comparative voting rights issues in Texas and California.
Final Assessment: summative memo, writing assignments throughout the semester, and class participation will make up the grade for the semester.
This course will be taught as an accelerated course. Class will meet for 12 weeks.