Supreme court to review Alabama redistricting plan

WASHINGTON Mon Jun 2, 2014 4:46pm EDT

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to weigh a challenge to Alabama's most recent redistricting plan for state elections over allegations it diminishes the influence of black voters.

The court will hear two cases brought by the Alabama Democratic Conference and the Alabama Legislative Black Caucus against the redistricting carried out by the Republican controlled state legislature in 2012.

Democrats say the state violated the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution by packing black voters, who tend to vote Democratic, into a small number of districts. The challengers say it makes it harder for Democrats to win in other districts. A federal court upheld the new plan in a December 2013 ruling.

"I don’t think they have a leg to stand on. I think it is going to be very clear that we complied," said Bill Armistead, chairman of the Alabama Republican Party. "It was well thought out and all of the legal ramifications have been satisfied."

Joe Reed, Chairman of the Alabama Democratic Conference, said Republicans were trying to weaken black voting strength.

"They are packing counties with blacks to cluster their votes," he said. "If you put all of the blacks together, they can't form a coalition with anybody to get legislation passed." Oral arguments and a decision are expected in the Supreme Court's next term, which begins in October and ends in June 2015.

The cases are Alabama Democratic Conference v. Alabama and Alabama Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama, U.S. Supreme Court, No. 13-1138 and 13.895.

(Additional reporting by Verna Gates.; Editing by Howard Goller and Andre Grenon)

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Comments (2)
dcayman wrote:
If not for Gerrymandering the Republican Party would be meaningless…court will uphold this as they know which side their bread is buttered on

Jun 03, 2014 2:16pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Syanis wrote:
So its fine when Dems control when its time to set district lines and they draw lines to give Dems more representation through the misuse of minorities. But if Reps do it to balance or cut Dem representation somehow now its unethical and racist?

So why is it fine to take representation away from whites and give it to blacks yet the opposite is so bad?

In truth when you look at percentages and the fact Dems claim to be those for minorities you start seeing that it looks like Dems are hugely over represented as minorities are… well a minority.

Whats so hard with Dems just trying to win votes based on having a better agenda without race baiting and race games? Select who you want based on what they plan to do. Its time to ban party affiliations from being on the ballot and in campaign ads completely. Stop branding this person as Dem and Rep and instead let people choose based on what the candidate says.

Jun 06, 2014 11:52am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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