Pennsylvania lawmakers bow to court order to redraw districts

North Carolina redistricting litigation: What the heck is going on?

Pennsylvania House and Senate Republican leaders sent a new congressional district map to Gov. Tom Wolf Friday night, according to Neal Lesher, a spokesman for Pa. House Speaker Mike Turzai.

No additional information was immediately released.

The attorneys for the league argued, and the Supreme Court agreed, that the state's gerrymandered districts diluted the votes of Democratic voters, violating the state Constitution's guarantee of free and fair elections.

The new maps will not affect a March 13 special election in southwest Pennsylvania, where state Rep. Rick Saccone and Democrat Conor Lamb are vying to replace Republican Tim Murphy, who resigned amid a sex scandal.

Republicans asked the U.S. Supreme Court to halt the state court's ruling because of the condensed timeline and the threat that if the Legislature fails to produce new maps on time, the state Supreme Court will produce its own.

"The consensus is clear that Pennsylvanians are fed up with gerrymandering - and the gridlock and lack of reform that it breeds", Wolf said.

It has given the legislature and the governor until February 15 to "enact" a new plan. Pennsylvania's secretary of State pushed back the window for candidates to circulate nominating petitions, but so far there are no plans to delay the May 15 primary.

Even before the maps became public Friday, however, Democratic leaders were fuming that they had been kept sidelined in the process that - to date - has basically involved only the two senior-most Republican leaders.

"Gerrymandering contributes to the political polarization and dysfunction in this country and is a threat to our democracy".

In sum, the court found that "in its disregard of the traditional redistricting factors, the 2011 Plan consistently works toward and accomplishes the concentration of the power of historically-Republican voters and, conversely, the corresponding dilution of Petitioners' power to elect their chosen representatives".

"It is judge shopping, pure and simple", Lewis said at a news conference.

The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule later this year on partisan gerrymandering cases in Wisconsin and Maryland.

It does seem like there's been a lot of redistricting litigation going on, but it hasn't just been Democrats taking advantage of their legal options - the GOP has also filed their fair share of documents, including a number of emergency pleas to higher courts when they don't get the ruling they want. DEMOCRATS TRYING TO BREAK GOP SUPER-MAJORITIESIn a Facetime interview with ABC11, Durham and Orange County Democrat Graig Meyer defended his party's decision to keep fighting for the new maps in court.

"It's just a distraction, they should just go ahead and get it done", said U.S. Rep. Dwight Evans (D-2).

The new map would have the infamous 7th Congressional district cut a swath through parts of Montgomery, Chester, and Delaware Counties on a generally northeast to southwest axis.

"I would never have fathomed that the Court would give the General Assembly 18 days to finish its assignment all the while holding its opinion for 16 of them".

Second, this ruling does not affect the district maps for the Pennsylvania Assembly (House and Senate).

The state constitution says House and Senate districts "shall remain unaltered until the return of another decennial census of population taken by order of Congress".

Pray tell, what did these justices do? Lawmakers did not vote on the plan, and it's unclear whether or not they will next week now that the proposal has been submitted to Wolf.

Related news:

Hot News

Real Madrid vs. PSG tickets sold in 37 minutes
Feb 11, 2018 - 10:16
Cristiano Ronaldo got a hat-trick for the Los Merengues, while Lucas Vasquez and Toni Kroos were also on target for the home team. Madrid have endured a hard campaign, sitting 19 points behind Barca in LaLiga, but are in the last 16 in the Champions League .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Sen. Bennet votes against budget agreement
Feb 10, 2018 - 08:17
The deal would extend the Children's Health Insurance Program for 10 years, four more than the extension Congress just enacted. But the Senate's failure to advance the bill will not damage the budget legislation, which is due for a vote later in the day.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Uber owes Waymo $244 million after trade-secret settlement
Feb 10, 2018 - 08:16
Kalanick met with Alphabet's current CEO Larry Page and was picked up in a self-driving auto - Kalanick thought that was cool. Kalanick was asked if he looked at this text and the accompanying link.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Snow will move through the area overnight
Feb 10, 2018 - 08:08
Roads could be slick with patchy fog for the Tuesday morning drive so allow extra time to get to where you need to be. Thankfully, the area did not wake up to additional snowfall from the wave that traveled over the state last night.