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House set to consider Voting Rights Act renewal again

[JURIST] House Republicans have agreed to hold a vote Thursday on extending provisions of the 1965 Voting Rights Act [text; DOJ backgrounder] for another 25 years, House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) announced Wednesday. In June Southern lawmakers unexpectedly balked [JURIST report] at two key provisions - one requiring nine mostly Southern states with a history of race-based voter discrimination to seek DOJ approval before changing voting laws, and one requiring bilingual ballots in certain areas - that they characterized as unnecessary federal oversight.

The reauthorization bill was introduced [JURIST report] in May by House Judiciary Chairman James Sensenbrenner (R-WI), and generally enjoys broad bipartisan support. Reuters has more.

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