JUDICIARY: Change of Mind

Because Lonnie E. Smith is a Negro, election judges in Houston, Tex. barred him from the polls in a 1940 Democratic primary. Lonnie Smith saw his lawyers. This week the Supreme Court of the U.S. decided (8-to-1) that Texas must not bar Negroes from voting in primaries because of race. This had meaning for all Southern states—although poll taxes and "educational requirements" will still keep many a Negro from voting.

The Court had scrapped a nine-year-old precedent. In 1935 the Justices had decided that voting in the primaries was a "privilege" which the Democratic Party could extend or withhold—something like...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!