Author Topic: Supreme Court halts drawing of new congressional maps in Michigan, Ohio  (Read 790 times)

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Offline mystery-ak

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Supreme Court halts drawing of new congressional maps in Michigan, Ohio
by Melissa Quinn
 | May 24, 2019 03:36 PM

The Supreme Court on Friday halted two lower-court rulings that struck down congressional maps in Ohio and Michigan as unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders and ordered the drawing of new congressional maps before the 2020 elections.

Republican lawmakers in both states asked the high court to put their respective lower-court rulings on hold. The Supreme Court granted those requests, with no noted dissents.

The maps in Michigan and Ohio had been struck down by two different federal courts as partisan gerrymanders that violated the Constitution. The federal court in Ohio invalidated the state’s congressional map, under which Republicans held 12 of the state’s 16 congressional seats, in a ruling this month. The court in Michigan, meanwhile, ruled last month the state’s redistricting plan crafted by the GOP-controlled legislature was an “extremely grave” violation of the Constitution.

The order from the high court comes as the justices are considering two cases that test the limits of partisanship in the redistricting process.

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SCOTUSblog by Amy Howe 5/24/2019

Court puts partisan-gerrymandering rulings on hold

In the next month or so, the Supreme Court is expected to issue its decisions in a pair of cases challenging federal congressional districts in North Carolina and Maryland as the product of unconstitutional partisan gerrymandering. When the justices heard oral argument in the two cases in late March, a key issue was whether courts should review partisan-gerrymandering claims at all or should instead stay out of them, leaving the issue to politicians and the political process. Two weeks ago, Republican officials from Ohio and Michigan asked the Supreme Court to put lower court rulings that found partisan gerrymandering in those states on hold while they appeal. Today the Supreme Court granted those requests, in a series of brief unsigned orders that were fairly unsurprising in light of the pending North Carolina and Maryland cases.

Republicans in Ohio had come to the Supreme Court on May 10, one week after a three-judge federal court struck down the state’s federal congressional map and ordered the state’s general assembly to come up with a new plan by June 14. One group of officials, led by Rep. Steve Chabot, characterized the lower court’s ruling as having “recognized a constitutional claim to vindicate partisan buyer’s remorse” after “half the Democratic members of the Ohio legislature” voted to support the plan.

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