May 21, 2020/Press

Where Was Tillis? Confirming A Judge Known for Defending Voter Suppression Tactics

On February 11, the same day the World Health Organization officially designated the illness from coronavirus as COVID-19, Senator Tillis cast his vote for a judge who defended racial gerrymandering and voter suppression tactics, the latest example of Tillis doing everything but address the coronavirus during the critical month of February.
Tillis’ vote on February 11 was for Andrew Brasher, a judge “notable for his strong defense” of voter suppression tactics and unconstitutional racial gerrymandering. Brasher was on President Trump’s transition team, argued in favor of gutting the Voting Rights Act, and was so extreme in one of his defenses of voter suppression that even Justice Scalia rejected Brasher’s position. Civil rights groups, including the NAACP, lined up against Brasher, noting that he “has the worst voting rights record of any Trump appellate nominee.
Senator Tillis’ campaign admits this is a glaring hole in his response – his campaign’s “complete response timeline” revealed that Tillis didn’t take public action for a month after receiving a briefing on January 24, three days after the first U.S. COVID-19 case was confirmed. 
Instead – as detailed in our “Where Was Tillis?” series – Tillis was doing critical work introducing a meaningless Senate resolution, appearing at Trump events, and renaming a Post Office.
Rather than take earlier action – which new reports show would have slowed the growth of the coronavirus – Senator Tillis waited a month to act, wasting critical time that should have been used to prepare for the coming pandemic