You are here

Supreme Court Reinforces Equality Principles In Drawing Election Districts

March 1, 2017

Washington, DC – On news today that the U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling in Bethune-Hill v. Virginia State Board of Elections, CAC Civil Rights Director David Gans issued the following reaction: 

Today’s opinion unanimously reverses the district court for applying a crabbed test for racial gerrymandering and requires further review of 11 challenged districts. This is an important reminder that courts must carefully review state district lines to ensure consistency with the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection for all persons. States cannot use racial quotas to draw district lines and hope to escape constitutional scrutiny. If the district court follows the principles laid out in today’s opinion, it should strike down the 11 districts as a violation of equal protection.

#

Resources:

CAC’s “friend of the court” brief in Bethune-Hill v. Virginia State Board of Elections: http://theusconstitution.org/cases/bethune-hill-et-al-v-virginia-state-board-elections-et-al-us-sup-ct 

“Protecting the Ballot for All: How Federal Courts Have Vindicated the Constitution and Prevented Voter Suppression by the States in the Run Up To the 2016 Election,” CAC Issue Brief, David Gans, September 2016: http://theusconstitution.org/sites/default/files/briefs/Protecting-the-Ballot-for-All.pdf 

“Voting Rights Back at the Supreme Court: The Big Racial Gerrymandering Cases You Haven’t Heard Of,” David H. Gans, December 1, 2016 http://www.theusconstitution.org/text-history/4054/voting-rights-back-supreme-court 

##

Constitutional Accountability Center (www.theusconstitution.org) is a think tank, public interest law firm, and action center dedicated to fulfilling the progressive promise of the Constitution's text and history.

###