mcloudy.png
Saturday July 20th, 2019 6:33PM

New maps sent to court in Pennsylvania gerrymandering case

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — New proposals to redraw Pennsylvania's congressional districts rolled in Thursday in a high-stakes gerrymandering case, meeting a court-ordered deadline to submit maps of boundaries for the state Supreme Court to consider adopting for this year's election.

Pennsylvania's House Democrats and Senate Democrats each submitted a plan Thursday, as did a group of Republican activists who intervened in the case. The registered Democratic voters who sued successfully to invalidate the current map planned to submit a map and Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf may also. Each can submit as many suggested maps as they like.

The midnight deadline gives justices four more days to impose new boundaries under a timeline the divided court set to keep May's primary election on schedule.

Pennsylvania's congressional map — drawn by Republicans to get Republicans elected — is widely viewed as among the nation's most gerrymandered. Upending it could boost Democrats nationally in their quest to capture control of the U.S. House and dramatically change the state's predominantly Republican, all-male delegation. Meanwhile, sitting congressmen, dozens of would-be candidates and millions of voters could find themselves in different districts.

Republican lawmakers say they will swiftly ask federal judges to block a new map, and contend that the Democratic-majority court had no power to invalidate the congressional boundaries or draw new ones.

The court will be advised by Stanford University law professor Nathan Persily, who has assisted judges drawing districts in North Carolina, New York, Connecticut, Georgia and Maryland. The justices could pick a submitted map, or rely on Persily to draw one.

Pennsylvania's Republican Senate majority leader, Jake Corman, on Thursday warned anew that the tight timeline would create chaos in Pennsylvania's congressional primaries, and the court-ordered process would unconstitutionally usurp the role of the governor and Legislature.

"We're going to have a Stanford professor come into Pennsylvania," Corman said. "He's going to act as the prosecutor by presenting the evidence, he's going to act as the juror by evaluating the evidence and he's solely going to act as a judge by ultimately ruling on the evidence and produce a map, one person, to the court for the people of Pennsylvania to live under."

Corman also attacked Wolf for backing the court, saying Wolf's "loyalties to the Democrat National Committee and making Nancy Pelosi the speaker of the House is more important than his loyalties to the Pennsylvania Constitution."

Leaders of the state Legislature's huge Republican majorities submitted a map Friday, although Wolf rejected it, saying it was as gerrymandered as the 6-year-old map it would replace.

That map, crafted by Republicans who controlled the Legislature and governor's office after the 2010 census, succeeded in its aim: Republicans won 13 of 18 seats in three straight elections, even though Pennsylvania's statewide elections are often closely divided and registered Democratic voters outnumber Republicans.

In drawing it, Republicans broke decades of precedent and created bizarrely shaped districts in what Franklin and Marshall College political scientist G. Terry Madonna called "the worst gerrymander in modern Pennsylvania history."

The court threw it out last month, saying it unconstitutionally put partisan interests above other line-drawing criteria, such as eliminating municipal and county divisions and keeping districts compact.

The revised map Republicans submitted reduced splits and ironed out some of the most contorted boundaries. It also kept nearly 70 percent of residents — and every congressman — in their old districts in what Republicans called an effort to minimize disruption, although it shifted key Democratic challengers into new districts and Wolf criticized it as keeping "nearly 70 percent of residents in districts the court found unconstitutional."

The court gave no direction to protect incumbent lawmakers or to keep previous districts largely intact. Meanwhile, the NAACP wrote to Wolf and top lawmakers last week to warn against redrawing two Philadelphia-based districts to "disenfranchise the vast and robust communities of color."

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Sheriff's report: Suspect confessed to Florida school attack
Sheriff's report: Suspect in Florida school attack confessed to shooting students, hiding ammunition.
5:03PM ( 51 seconds ago )
The Latest: Police report: Suspect confessed to shooting
A Broward County Sheriff's Office report says Nikolas Cruz confessed to being the shooter at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School
5:02PM ( 1 minute ago )
Warning signs may have been missed in school shooting case
Months before authorities say Nikolas Cruz walked into his former high school in Florida and slaughtered 17 people, the troubled teen began showing signs he was bent on violence
4:51PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Senate rejects bipartisan immigration plan and Trump's, too
The Senate has blocked a bipartisan immigration plan and a more restrictive proposal by President Donald Trump
4:28PM ( 35 minutes ago )
Shooting renews questions about preventing school carnage
Florida shooting renews questions about preventing school carnage
4:25PM ( 38 minutes ago )
Russian mother grieves for son killed by US strike in Syria
For Russian mother Farkhanur Gavrilova, the blow came a week ago when an acquaintance called her to say her son was killed in a U.S. airstrike in Syria that pitted Russian and U.S. combatants against each other for the first time in the Syrian war
4:18PM ( 46 minutes ago )
AP National News
The Latest: Uber says shooting suspect used their service
Uber has confirmed that the suspect in the deadly shooting rampage at a Florida high school used the ridesharing service before the shooting
2:53PM ( 2 hours ago )
School shooting suspect belonged to white nationalist group
Suspect in Florida school shooting belonged to white nationalist group
2:46PM ( 2 hours ago )
The Latest: Officer: Suspect looked like typical student
The police officer who arrested the high school shooting suspect in Florida says the teen looked like a "typical high school student" when he spotted him walking away from the school
2:42PM ( 2 hours ago )
Top U.S. News short headlines
2 firms paid $50 million by Trump inaugural committee
President Donald Trump's inauguration committee paid two private companies more than $50 million while donating $5 million to charitable causes
4:21PM ( 42 minutes ago )
Tense times in US-Turkey relations as officials huddle
The specter of a U.S.-Turkish clash in Syria is looming over a meeting between the top American diplomat and Turkey's leader
4:15PM ( 49 minutes ago )
The Latest: Senate rejects Trump immigration measure
The Senate has rejected President Donald Trump's immigration bill
4:08PM ( 55 minutes ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
The Latest: Collins, Graham appeal to Trump on immigration
A bipartisan group of senators pitching an immigration bill is pushing back against criticism from the Trump administration
1:40PM ( 3 hours ago )
The Latest: Obama calls for gun safety laws after shooting
Former President Barack Obama is calling for "common-sense gun safety laws" following Wednesday's school shooting in Florida
1:04PM ( 3 hours ago )
The Latest: Presidential veto threatened on immigration plan
The White House is threatening to veto a bipartisan Senate immigration proposal and says the emerging deal would "produce a flood of new illegal immigration."
12:46PM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Warning signs may have been missed in school shooting case
Months before authorities say Nikolas Cruz walked into his former high school in Florida and slaughtered 17 people, the troubled teen began showing signs he was bent on violence
4:51PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Public money fuels Indiana Senate candidate's publicity bid
Indiana congressman who warns about 'out-of-control' government spending used $3M in public and taxpayer money for self-promotion
4:50PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Gophers' Lynch drops appeal, denies sex assault allegations
One-time Minnesota basketball standout Reggie Lynch has dropped his appeal of his recommended expulsion for allegedly raping two women
4:47PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Amy Schumer ties knot with chef Chris Fischer
Amy Schumer has married chef Chris Fischer in a small ceremony in Malibu, California
4:46PM ( 17 minutes ago )
These are the lives lost in the Florida high school shooting
Everyone and anyone was a target for the gunman who opened fire with an AR-15 at a large high school in south Florida
4:46PM ( 18 minutes ago )