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Insight: From Alabama, an epic challenge to voting rights

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Photographer
MARVIN GENTRY

Jon Graham, the mayor of Calera, Alabama, poses for a photo outside the City Hall May 15, 2012. Graham says the city was not trying to reduce black voter strength when it redrew District 2 in 2008. To the contrary, he said, thanks to increased integration, it would have been hard to draw a majority-black district without creating wildly gerrymandered lines. Picture taken May 15, 2012. REUTERS/Marvin Gentry

Jon Graham, the mayor of Calera, Alabama, poses for a photo outside the City Hall May 15, 2012. Graham says the city was not trying to reduce black voter strength when it redrew District 2 in 2008. To the contrary, he said, thanks to increased integration, it would have been hard to draw a majority-black district without creating wildly gerrymandered lines. Picture taken May 15, 2012. REUTERS/Marvin Gentry
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Photographer
MARVIN GENTRY

Frank "Butch" Ellis, lead attorney in the disputed Voting Rights Act, poses outside his office in Calera, Alabama May 15, 2012. Ellis has taken the local lead in a lawsuit challenging federal intervention on election matters in Shelby County. Picture taken May 15, 2012. To match story USA-COURT/VOTINGRIGHTS REUTERS/Marvin Gentry

Frank "Butch" Ellis, lead attorney in the disputed Voting Rights Act, poses outside his office in Calera, Alabama May 15, 2012. Ellis has taken the local lead in a lawsuit challenging federal intervention on election matters in Shelby County. Picture taken May 15, 2012. To match story USA-COURT/VOTINGRIGHTS REUTERS/Marvin Gentry
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Photographer
MARVIN GENTRY

Pastor Harry S. Jones of the New Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church, poses outside his church in Calera, Alabama May 15, 2012. Jones is a supporter of Calera's only African American city council member Ernest Montgomery. Picture taken May 15, 2012. REUTERS/Marvin Gentry

Pastor Harry S. Jones of the New Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church, poses outside his church in Calera, Alabama May 15, 2012. Jones is a supporter of Calera's only African American city council member Ernest Montgomery. Picture taken May 15, 2012. REUTERS/Marvin Gentry
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Photographer
MARVIN GENTRY

Ernest Montgomery, the only African American Calera city council member, poses for a picture at the New Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church in Calera, Alabama May 15, 2012. Montgomery lost his seat in 2008 when he was defeated by a white challenger, after his district was redrawn and went from 70 percent black to 20 percent black, but the Justice Department blocked the results of that election. Picture taken May 15, 2012....more

Ernest Montgomery, the only African American Calera city council member, poses for a picture at the New Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church in Calera, Alabama May 15, 2012. Montgomery lost his seat in 2008 when he was defeated by a white challenger, after his district was redrawn and went from 70 percent black to 20 percent black, but the Justice Department blocked the results of that election. Picture taken May 15, 2012. REUTERS/Marvin Gentry
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