Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Wisconsin Gerrymandering Case

Claudine Rigal
Juin 24, 2017

The dissenting judge said that Wisconsin might have been politically motivated but the state complied with traditional redistricting principles that the Supreme Court has previously upheld. In addition, the case is getting attention because in recent years the court has considered racial inequities in political maps - but not the issue of how much partisan gerrymandering is reasonable. In other districts, Democrats were so well represented it limited voters' ability to elect Democrats in other districts.

But the dozen plaintiffs - voters - said the evidence laid out in a trial in the Wisconsin case showed that "Republican legislative leaders authorized a secretive and exclusionary mapmaking process aimed at securing for their party a large advantage that would persist no matter what happened in future elections". "The maps were in place and republicans gained seats in '12, '14, and '16", he said.

Wisconsin Republican Attorney General Brad Schimel welcomed the justices' decision to hear the state's appeal and called the state's redistricting process "entirely lawful and constitutional".

Sachin Chheda, director of the Fair Elections Project, which organized and launched the lawsuit: "We've already had two federal courts declare the map unconstitutional in part or whole".

The Campaign Legal Center (CLC) filed a brief to the Supreme Court to affirm the lower court's ruling in favor of Whitford.

This could be a historic ruling if, in fact, the Supreme Court finally invokes a standard for declaring a partisan gerrymander unconstitutional, a move the Court has yet to take despite declaring its authority to adjudicate partisan gerrymandering in the 1986 in case of Davis v. Bandemer.

The challengers in the case, Gill v. Whitford, No. 16-1161, say they have found a way to separate partisanship from the many other factors that influence how districts are drawn.

The court's five conservative justices voted to stop the redistricting process.

The four more liberal justices, named to the court by Democrats, would have let the new line-drawing proceed even as the court considers the issue.

Last year, a three-judge federal court broke new ground when it ruled the map was unconstitutional because its "motivating factor" was an "intent to entrench a political party in power".

The U.S. Supreme Court, forging its way to the end of the current term, unloaded a raft of important decisions Monday, with many more expected in the days to come.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court said Monday it will decide whether Republican lawmakers in Wisconsin drew electoral districts so out of whack with the state's political breakdown that they violated the constitutional rights of Democratic voters.

Erika King, political expert at Grand Valley State University, told FOX 17 that this case has the potential to be a "game changer".

The case will be argued in the fall.

After winning control of the state legislature in 2010, Wisconsin Republicans redrew the statewide electoral map and approved the redistricting plan in 2011. And "that work is proceeding". In 2012, Republicans won 48.6 percent of the two-party vote for Legislature, but still won 60 of the 99 seats in the Assembly. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan indicated that they would have denied the state's request.

D'autres rapports CampDesrEcrues

Discuter de cet article