US

Civil rights leaders slam House's third-ranking Republican for inaction on Voting Rights Act

Two national civil rights leaders are reviving criticism of a top-ranking House Republican's speech to a white supremacist group 13 years ago, trying to jumpstart action on a proposal to strengthen the Voting Rights Act.

Marc Morial of the National Urban League and Wade Henderson of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights sent a letter criticizing Majority Whip Steve Scalise for inaction on efforts to revise the law.

The men referenced Scalise's admission he spoke in 2002 to a white supremacist group near New Orleans. Morial and Henderson say Scalise hasn't done enough "to heal the wounds you caused by delivering the speech."

Scalise apologized last year for the speech, saying he was unaware of the group's racial philosophy at the time. His office didn't immediately respond Wednesday.