Wisconsin AG 'thrilled' high court to hear case


What's next? It's unclear if the Wisconsin case, which the U.S Supreme Court is set to consider in its term that begins in November, could affect the pending case in Texas, because of the different timelines and arguments being made. If the high court upholds this ruling, it would establish a sweeping precedent that could lead to a wave of lawsuits against widespread partisan gerrymanders nationally. Already, federal courts have determined that Republican North Carolina lawmakers drew voting districts that are racially gerrymandered, which the Supreme Court has ruled unconstitutional. It's time for the legislature to stop with the false talking points, and focus on ensuring every Wisconsin citizen has their rights protected by drawing new maps now.

The lower court found that redistricting efforts are unlawful partisan gerrymandering when they seek to entrench the party in power, and have no other legitimate justification.

He continued: "If the justices agree, it would be the first time the court has articulated a constitutional rule in this context, which could - and likely would - have enormous ramifications nationwide".

The case involves district lines in Wisconsin that challengers say were drawn unconstitutionally to benefit Republicans.

The Supreme Court said Monday it will hear a closely watched challenge to partisan gerrymandering in Wisconsin and decide whether it is unconstitutional for party leaders to entrench themselves in power with carefully drawn electoral maps. In the past, the four most conservative justices (then including Antonin Scalia) have written that the courts should stay out of the issue altogether, while the four more progressive ones have disagreed.

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"I am thrilled the Supreme Court has granted our request to review the redistricting decision and that Wisconsin will have an opportunity to defend its redistricting process", Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel said in a prepared statement Monday. The court's ruling could have broad implications for redistricting in states across the nation come 2020.

The measure, call the efficiency gap, shows how cracking (breaking up blocs of Democratic voters) and packing (concentrating Democrats within certain districts) results in wasted votes - excess votes for winners in safe districts and perpetually inadequate votes for the losers.

The case is Gill v. Whitford, Docket No. 16-1161.

Wisconsin Democrats are concerned that redistricting practices, such as the plan that took place in their state in 2011, could violate voters' democratic rights.

The lawmakers packed too many African-American voters into the districts, weakening their overall influence in congressional elections, a panel of federal judges ruled in 2016, and new districts were drawn. They also have majorities in an all-time high of 69 of 99 state legislative chambers, according to the Republican State Leadership Committee.

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Justice Anthony M. Kennedy was in the middle.

One can see how this method would make Democratic votes less equal than Republicans votes because, under this map, Republicans won two thirds of the seats with just 48.6 per cent of the vote. They say their rights were violated by Republican-drawn maps that pack Democratic voters into blue legislative districts, in turn, making competitive districts more favorable to Republicans.

Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts (R) and associate Justice Neil Gorsuch are joined by Louise Gorsuch during his investiture ceremony at the Supreme Court in Washington, U.S., June 15, 2017.

As debate surrounding gerrymandered districts has stayed on the front pages, Republican legislators have fired back, saying that Democrats did their fair share of gerrymandering during the decades in which they controlled the General Assembly.

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