Tag: Redistricting and Reapportionment

Republican Gerrymander Whiz Had Wider Influence Than Was Known

Thomas B. Hofeller was known in political circles as a master of drawing political districts and using demographic data to further the aims of Republicans. But before his death a year ago, the public record of his work was limited to gerrymandered political maps in North Carolina and a handful of other states, and a […]

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The Battle Over the Files of a Gerrymandering Mastermind

At the heart of a decisive court ruling on Tuesday striking down North Carolina’s state legislative maps was evidence culled from the computer backups of the man who drew them: Thomas B. Hofeller, the Republican strategist and master of gerrymandering, who died last year. Documents from the backups, which surfaced after his death, were also […]

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Three North Carolina Judges Step In Where the Supreme Court Refuses

Three state judges on a North Carolina trial court just did what a majority on the United States Supreme Court said was impossible only a few months ago — apply well-established legal standards to strike down some of the most egregious partisan gerrymanders in the country. The state court judges’ 357-page ruling applies to the […]

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North Carolina’s Legislative Maps Are Thrown Out by State Court Panel

In a major blow to Republicans who control the Legislature in one of the nation’s most bitterly divided states, a state court panel threw out North Carolina’s state legislative maps as an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander and ordered lawmakers to draw up new ones in two weeks. The ruling on Tuesday by a three-judge panel in […]

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In the War Against Gerrymandering, an Army of Voters Meets a Dug-in Foe

MERRILL, Wis. — When the Supreme Court concluded this summer that it had no authority to strike down partisan political maps, no matter how outrageous, Chief Justice John G. Roberts offered solace to those who call the maps dangerous to democracy. Maybe federal judges cannot outlaw gerrymanders, he wrote in the court’s majority opinion. But […]

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A Plan to End Partisan Gerrymandering

Listen and subscribe to our podcast from your mobile device: Via Apple Podcasts | Via RadioPublic | Via Stitcher The Supreme Court ruled last month that federal courts cannot rule on cases of partisan gerrymandering, saying that judges are not entitled to second-guess the decisions made by state legislators who draw voting maps. We spoke […]

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House Holds Barr and Ross in Contempt Over Census Dispute

WASHINGTON — The House voted Wednesday evening to hold Attorney General William P. Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in criminal contempt of Congress for their refusal to turn over key documents related to the Trump administration’s attempt to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census. The citations for two cabinet officials, approved 230-198, […]

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If the Supreme Court Won’t Prevent Gerrymandering, Who Will?

Progressives have long looked to federal courts to guard the rights of racial minorities and dissenters. But that protection is weakening. Faced with the enormous injustice of partisan gerrymandering, the Supreme Court last month permitted politicians drawing election district maps to discriminate by party and even potentially mask their racial “packing” and “cracking” as mere […]

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The Long History of the U.S. Government Asking Americans Whether They Are Citizens

When Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross ordered the Census Bureau to attach a question on citizenship to the 2020 census, the first argument he used to back up his decision was also the simplest: We’ve always asked. The question has been “a longstanding historical practice,” he wrote, “asked in some form or another for nearly 200 […]

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The President and the Census

Listen and subscribe to our podcast from your mobile device: Via Apple Podcasts | Via RadioPublic | Via Stitcher Federal courts keep rejecting President Trump’s attempts to ask about citizenship on the 2020 census. But no matter what the courts decide, the president may have already achieved his goal. [For an exclusive look at how […]

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How to Fight Gerrymandering Now

This article is part of David Leonhardt’s newsletter. You can sign up here to receive it each weekday. John Roberts and the four other Republican-appointed Supreme Court justices last month gave their approval to extreme gerrymandering, which means that federal courts will no longer be able to reject political maps drawn for partisan reasons. That’s […]

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It’s Not Just the White House in 2020. The Power to Draw Maps Is Also at Stake.

DALLAS — Only hours after the United States Supreme Court said it could do nothing to stop partisan gerrymandering of the nation’s political maps, Eric H. Holder Jr. had a message for his fellow Democrats in downtown Dallas. “Texas is a place where we have to win,” Mr. Holder, who served as attorney general during […]

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Is Joe Biden 2020’s Jeb Bush?

Gail Collins: Bret, the president’s been putting on quite a performance. Cavorting with Kim Jong-un in the DMZ and joking with Vladimir Putin about Russian interference in our presidential election, hehehe. Next, he’s planning to expropriate the traditional Independence Day celebration in Washington and turn it into some kind of Donald Does Democracy personal extravaganza. […]

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Gerrymandering and the Rising Risk of a Monopoly on Power

ImageProtesters outside the Supreme Court on Thursday.CreditCarlos Barria/Reuters At some point or another over the last decade, Democrats have won the most votes but lost national elections for the presidency, the House and the Senate. Partisan gerrymandering is just one of the reasons the Democrats are at such a disadvantage. But the Supreme Court’s decision […]

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Kamala Harris’s Moment, Voting Rights, Yet Another Candidate: This Week in the 2020 Race

Every Saturday morning, we’re publishing “This Week in the 2020 Race”: a quick way to follow the presidential campaign and the field of 24 candidates for the Democratic nomination. Trust us, we know how hard it is to keep up. ImageSenator Kamala Harris of California confronted Joseph R. Biden Jr. in a memorable exchange on […]

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With No Supreme Court End to Gerrymandering, Will States Make It More Extreme?

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — For most of this decade, North Carolina Democrats have complained that the Republican-led legislature has aggressively altered the state’s voting rules and redrawn electoral maps to secure an overwhelming partisan advantage. On Thursday, the United States Supreme Court said it couldn’t do anything about it. The decision by the justices not to […]

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The Supreme Court Isn’t as Naïve as Trump Hoped

The Supreme Court affirmed a basic rule of the operation of government on Thursday: Federal agencies have to give believable reasons for the actions they take. The justices applied that rule to stop the Trump administration, at least for now, from wrecking the 2020 census. The decision in Department of Commerce v. New York shouldn’t […]

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Supreme Court Gives a Victory to G.O.P. on Gerrymandering and to Democrats Opposed to Census Citizenship Question

WASHINGTON — In a pair of decisions with vast implications for the American political landscape, the Supreme Court on Thursday delivered a victory to Republicans by ruling that federal courts are powerless to hear challenges to extreme partisan gerrymandering but gave a reprieve to Democrats by delaying the Trump administration’s efforts to add a question […]

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The Supreme Court’s Green Light to Partisan Gerrymandering Will Drag It Down Further Into the Mud

The Supreme Court decision on Thursday in Rucho v. Common Cause purports to take federal courts out of the business of policing partisan gerrymanders and leave the issue for states to handle. But the decision will instead push federal courts further into the political thicket, and, in states with substantial minority voter populations, force courts […]

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