washingtonpost.com - 63 days ago
Supreme Court to hear potentially landmark case on partisan gerrymandering
The Supreme Court declared Monday that it will consider whether gerrymandered election maps favoring one political party over another violate the Constitution, a potentially fundamental change in the way American elections are conducted.
The justices regularly are called to invalidate state electoral maps that have been illegally drawn to reduce the influence of racial minorities by depressing the impact of their votes. [Supreme Court says Virginia redistricting must be reexamined for racial bias] But the Supreme Court has long been tolerant of partisan gerrymandering — and some justices have thought that the court shouldn’t even be involved. A finding otherwise would have a revolutionary impact on the reapportionment that will take place after the 2020 election and could come at the expense of Republicans, who control the process in the majority of states. The court accepted a case from Wisconsin, where a divided panel of three federal judges last year ruled that the state’s Republican leadership in 2011 pushed through a redistricting plan so partisan that it violated the Constitution’s First Amendment and equal rights protections. (Daron Taylor/The Washington Post) The issue will be briefed and argued during the Supreme Court term that begins in October. [Wisconsin case offers Supreme Court chance to tackle partisan gerrymandering] The justices gave themselves a bit of an out, saying they will further consider their jurisdiction over the case when it is heard on its merits. And the justices gave an indication of how divisive the issue might be.
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