University of Texas law professor Sandy Levinson really does not like the opinion in Shelby County v. Holder upending enforcement of the Voting Rights Act, so it's not surprising that he takes vigorous exception to its reasoning. Writing in Balkinization, he objects to Chief Justice John Roberts' paraphrase of the language of the 10th amendment in Shelby. The 10th amendment says this:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
John Roberts paraphrased the language this way:
Indeed, the Constitution provides that all powers not specifically granted to the Federal Government are reserved to the States or citizens. Amdt. 10
Levinson says that if one of his students, asked to complete a short-answer question on “what does the
10th Amendment say,” wrote what Roberts did Levinson would be "disinclined" to award it a very good grade. More to the point, Levinson says that
the Constitution expressly does grant Congress the power to engage in
all appropriate legislation to enforce the 15th Amendment's guarantee
that the right to vote will not be denied because of race, so the 10th
Amendment has "nothing whatsoever" to do with the case.