Pennsylvania Supreme Court Throws Out Congressional Maps

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Throws Out Congressional Maps

Less than two weeks after the 4th circuit court ruled North Carolina’s congressional districts were unconstitutional.  The Pennsylvania Supreme Court made an almost identical ruling about their states congressional districts,,,

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that the state’s congressional map “clearly, plainly and palpably violates” the state constitution and must be redrawn in the next three weeks after Democrats sued to allege Republicans unreasonably gerrymandered the districts to give the GOP a partisan advantage.

The court ruled a new map must be submitted to Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf by Feb. 9. That map “shall consist of: congressional districts composed of compact and contiguous territory; as nearly equal in population as practicable; and which do not divide any county, city, incorporated town, borough, township, or ward, except where necessary to ensure equality of population,” according to the court ruling.

What a surprise.  If anyone was wondering whether not this is a concentrated effort by liberal activist judges across the country to change the rules of redistricting.  Wonder no more.  The Supreme Court of the United States throughout its entire history has been very clear on partisan gerrymandering.  It is 100% legal.

In 2001, SCOTUS bizarrely upheld racially drawn districts arguing that in North Carolina race and political affiliation are highly correlated and therefore legal…

Given the undisputed evidence that racial identification is highly correlated with political affiliation in North Carolina, these facts in and of themselves cannot, as a matter of law, support the District Court’s judgment….given the “demanding” nature of that burden of proof…and given the sensitivity, the “extraordinary caution,” that district courts must show to avoid treading upon legislative prerogatives…the attacking party has not successfully shown that race, rather than politics, predominantly accounts for the result…

It’s amazing that despite the mountains of precedent lower courts continue to ignore it.  This summer, the Supreme Court will rule, once again, on partisan gerrymandering after taking up two suits from Maryland and Wisconsin.  It’s anyone’s guess which direction they will rule but its probably best if lower courts stay out of it till we know where SCOTUS stands in 2018.

 

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