Civil Rights

Most people equate civil rights with hate crimes, affirmative action, racial profiling and housing/workplace discrimination, but a number of new issues have emerged as political hot-button items. Same-sex marriage, new voting laws and equal access to quality education are also considered to be top civil rights priorities. Over the last three years, funding for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division has been increased and a long-standing class-action lawsuit filed to compensate Black farmers was settled. 

Civil Rights

Candidates on Civil Rights

President Obama has promoted civil rights laws and principles that seek to ensure that all Americans are treated fairly and equally. Under Obama, Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was repealed, the Justice Department is reviewing new voter ID laws, the Pigford lawsuit brought by African-American farmers was settled and the Fair Sentencing Act, which reduces sentencing disparities, was signed into law.

Civil rights matters have not been a platform issue for Mitt Romney. He has spoken in defense of equal employment rights for homosexuals but is against affirmative action quotas that have provided support for African-Americans.