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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 07:33 PM
Original message
SCOTUS stays Texas interim maps
Texas Redisricting blog 12/9/11
BREAKING: SCOTUS stays interim maps
In a late order tonight, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed all three interim maps until further order. The order did not indicate any dissents.

The high court also set expedited oral argument for January 9. The court allotted one hour for oral argument.

It is unclear for the moment what this means for Texas elections. For now, there are no legally enforceable maps for state house, senate, or congressional districts, but filing for other races continues with a December 15 deadline. Its not clear though whether the primary will be moved or will be bifurcated as the State of Texas has suggested.


Oh fuck! That means that the republicans/Abbott won!
:puke: :mad: :puke: :mad: :puke:
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 07:35 PM
Response to Original message
1. Texas election maps blocked, for now
SCOTUS blog 12/9/11

Texas election maps blocked, for now

The Supreme Court, working late on a Friday, agreed to rule on the constitutionality of three redistricting plans for the two houses of the Texas legislature and its 36-member U.S. House of Representatives delegation, and put on hold temporarily a U.S. District Courts interim maps. The Court called for expedited briefing, and set a hearing on the cases for Jan. 9 at 1 p.m. The Justices action gave Texas much of what its lawyers had sought in their challenge to the three-judge trial courts temporary maps, which were to be used for the 2012 election cycle. The Courts order is here. It raises the strong possibility of a major new ruling on the power of federal judges to draw up redistricting plans while a state legislatures own maps are under challenge in court.

Although the state had initially sought only a stay of the temporary redistricting plans, it suggested as an alternative that the Court take on the cases itself, and issue a prompt ruling. That is what the Justices agreed to do, putting the cases on its docket for review as 11-713 (the Texas state house case), 11-714 (the Texas state senate case), and 11-715 (the congressional delegation case). What the Court did not do was order any immediate change in the way Texas candidates go about signing up to run in the 2012 primary, now set for March 6. Cases 11-713 and 11-715 go by the same title, Perry, et al., v. Perez, et al., and case 11-714 is titled Perry, et al., v. Davis, et al.


:cry:
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 07:39 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Stinks!
Edited on Fri Dec-09-11 07:44 PM by Melissa G
We posted at the same time. The order is on another thread. http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
Here is the finish to the order

"The briefs of appellants and appellees, not to exceed 15,000 words, are to be filed simultaneously with the Clerk and served upon opposing counsel on or before 2 p.m., Wednesday, December 21, 2011. Reply briefs, not to exceed 15,000 words, are to be filed simultaneously with the Clerk and served upon opposing counsel on or before 2 p.m., Tuesday, January 3, 2012. The cases are set for oral argument on Monday, January 9, 2012, at 1 p.m"
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 07:52 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Throws a whole huge wrench in the process
Nobody knows anything about what will happen in January. I do think the one thing that's clear however is that there will be no primaries in March of 2012. I can not see how that happens.

:shrug:
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 07:56 PM
Response to Original message
4. Supreme Court Freezes Texas Elections
Texas Tribune 12/9/11

Supreme Court Freezes Texas Elections

In a late Friday afternoon order, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the use of court-drawn maps for legislative and congressional districts in Texas, telling the lawyers involved to be ready for oral arguments next month.

The state asked the court for a stay on maps for congressional, Texas House and Texas Senate maps. The court's order asks for briefs from the lawyers by December 21, replies by January 3, and sets the cases for oral arguments on January 9.

Candidates are already filing for office, working against a December 15 deadline. That's next Thursday. Since the maps aren't set, the deadline will probably be meaningless, at least for the congressional and legislative candidates. That could change the candidates' calculations about who's running for what. A lousy district in the current map could be replaced with a better one, if the maps are redrawn after the Supreme Court rules.

In its request for a stay, the state suggested the congressional and legislative primaries could be delayed from March 6 to May 22. The other primaries for President, U.S. Senate, and so on will remain in March.


What a friggin mess! :mad:
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 08:03 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. It's repub Voter Suppression at it's finest
Edited on Fri Dec-09-11 08:04 PM by Melissa G
Make folks come out for two elections. Yup! that will suppress turnout.
:puke: :mad:
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 08:28 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. I really with SCOTUS was more transparent
I want to know the process. Who voted what way to accept the case and stay the maps! I know Scalia voted with the Rs but are there any moderate Rs on this court anymore?

:shrug:
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 08:34 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. A stay was a pretty significant thing to grant
Edited on Fri Dec-09-11 08:34 PM by Melissa G
I sure hope we have something compelling on our side to combat it. Has anyone done an analysis on who they think did what?
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-11 08:01 PM
Response to Original message
5. Supreme Court Steps Into Texas Redistricting Fight
Huffington Post 12/9/11

Supreme Court Steps Into Texas Redistricting Fight

The Supreme Court on Friday night announced that it will hear oral argument to consider the constitutionality of Texas redistricting plans drawn up by a lower federal court.

A three-judge panel for the 5th Circuit in San Antonio put forward its own interim redistricting plans over Thanksgiving weekend. It determined that the Texas legislature failed to adequately account for the state's increase in Hispanic residents when redrawing its state and federal voting districts. The Supreme Court has now stayed those plans and ordered an expedited briefing schedule in advance of oral argument on Jan. 9.

When the 2010 census reported an increase of 4.2 million Texans, the Texas legislature was required to redraw the state's voting districts to comply with the federal constitution's one person-one vote command. But civil rights groups challenged the redrawn districts for both houses of the state legislature as well as the United States House of Representatives. They claimed that the new maps violated the Voting Rights Act of 1965 by diluting the votes of 2.8 million Hispanics who have moved to Texas since 2000.

Under the Voting Rights Act, Texas and most southern states, counties and townships with histories of race-based voter suppression, have to to clear any changes to their election procedures with the Department of Justice or a three-judge court in D.C. Texas had submitted its plans to the D.C. panel, which had yet to make any decision on the state's compliance with the landmark civil rights law, when the 5th Circuit -- finding the maps too flawed for use in the approaching state primary elections -- threw out the plans and replaced them with plans of its own.


:grr: Still seething from this development.
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onestepforward Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-11 01:04 AM
Response to Original message
9. Very disappointed to hear this.
Damn it.
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onestepforward Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-11 02:09 AM
Response to Original message
10. Email from Vince Leibowitz (The Dawn Group)
Edited on Sat Dec-10-11 02:17 AM by onestepforward
http://us2.campaign-archive2.com/?u=d1ec2e53fd0ec67267c...

Dear Clients & Fellow Democrats:

As you have no doubt already heard, about an hour ago, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an order staying the interim redistricting maps for the Texas House of Representatives, the Texas Senate, and Texas' U.S. House delegation issued late last month by a three-judge panel in San Antonio.

We are being inundated with questions relating to the Court's decision and what impact it will have not only on state legislative and Congressional races but on county-level races on the March 6 Democratic Primary Ballot.

First and foremost, we'd like to point you to two scholarly assessments of tonight's decision by the Supreme Court. First, we encourage you to review Lyle Denniston's at Bloomberg Law's SCOTUS Blog. Second, we would encourage you to take a look at Richard Hansen's take on the ruling at the Election Law Blog. Professor Hansen teaches law and political science at the University of California-Irvine and is one of the nation's foremost election law and redistricting scholars.

As we interpret this evening's order, there are currently no valid congressional, state house, or state senate districts in which candidates may file in Texas, as the court has stayed the interim map pending the outcome of this appeal and made no further order which would revert the districts to the maps passed by the Texas Legislature. We interpret this to mean that all current filings that have been made for these positions are--at least for now--null and void.

Right now, the biggest question on the mind of most candidates and Democrats is "what happens to the March 6 Primary?" The court's order in no way alters the March 6th primary date for offices not covered by the maps stayed by the court. Although one could interpret the court's order as a de facto change to the primary date for Congressional, state house, and state senate seats because the court won't hear the case until January 9, 2012--and the first day to apply for a mail-in ballot for the 2012 Primary is January 6, 2012--it is not yet clear that this is the court's intention.

As several scholars have noted already this evening, the late publication of the court's order tonight could indicate that further interim orders are likely early next week. While we are hesitant to speculate on what those interim orders may contain if they materialize, it is our hope that the Court will take into consideration a number of factors before completely disrupting the Texas primary process. One possible scenario is that the court could order that the election to continue using either the interim maps or the maps passed by the Legislature, and that special elections would result only in those districts where boundaries are ultimately changed--if the court invalidates the interim maps. We place emphasis on the last phrase because that is a very key piece of the puzzle, as it is entirely possible that, although the court has agreed to hear the case and has issued a stay, the end result may be that the interim maps are upheld.

We will continue to monitor developments in these cases and will keep you informed as to new developments. As always, if you have questions, please feel free to call our Austin office at 512.318.2432.

Sincerely,
Vince Leibowitz
Principal Consultant
The Dawn Group


Links to the two assessments mentioned above are at the link at the top.
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-11 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. Thanks for links!
I'd seen the SCOTUS blog link but had missed the Election Law blog.

:hi:
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-11 02:37 PM
Response to Original message
12. Answers to some common questions about the Supreme Courts ruling
Texas Redistricting blog 12/10/11
Answers to some common questions about the Supreme Courts ruling

(snip)
What about the March primary?

The March 6 primary also remains in place for now, but adjustments are virtually certain- even if the Supreme Court rules quickly after the January 9 oral argument.

At this point, its very unlikely that the primaries for state house, senate, and congressional races could be kept on March 6 just because of the logistics involved.

The ballot order draw in each county is scheduled for December 20 and ballots will be printed shortly after that (the process takes about two weeks) so that military mail ballots can go out by early-January, as required under federal law.

The process of redrawing precinct boundaries (and the need to have those boundaries precleared) further complicates matters and makes it unlikely that the March date can maintained if state house, senate, and congressional races are added back into the mix.

In other words, it seems certain that either the entire primary or primary elections for state house, senate, and congressional districts will need to be moved.

The state has suggested having state house, senate, and congressional primaries on May 22, with the primary for all other races remaining on March 6. However, the Supreme Court has not addressed the issue yet or asked the San Antonio court to do so.


:kick:
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