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TV (Nexstar): Supreme Court Decides to Hear Wisconsin Case on Partisan Gerrymandering

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

By Brie Jackson

The U.S. Supreme Court decided Monday to hear a Wisconsin case about partisan gerrymandering.

Experts say the outcome could change the way elections are conducted.

The issue at hand is whether election maps favoring one political party violates the constitution.
 
The Supreme Court agreed to hear a case that will decide if it is constitutional to draw election maps that clearly favor one political party.

David Gans, civil rights director for the Constitutional Accountability Center, says one question at hand is: do voters choose their elected representatives or is it the other way around?
 
"This is a huge deal. This case tees up a huge constitutional dispute about whether the Constitution limits partisan gerrymandering," Gans said.
 
In this case justices could draw clear limits between a legislator going too far in pursing partisan ends.
 
"The essential point is that in our constitutional system voters should choose their elected representatives. It shouldn't be in the power of a legislator to manipulate lines," Gans said.
 
In the past, we've seen the Supreme Court toss out electoral maps for suppressing minority votes. But never before have the justices found a plan unconstitutional based on partisan gerrymandering. What may become a landmark case could come down to a key vote.
 
The Wsconsin case will be heard by the Supreme Court this fall.

A group of Misourians have formed a petition to address gerrymandering and a number of other issues.

It's called the Clean Missouri Intiative.

According to the petition circulating online, it calls for an end to nearly all lobbyist gifts and requires all legislative records to become public.

It would lower the amount of legally acceptable campaign contributions.

It would also appoint a citizen commission to review political maps, in an effort to end gerrymandering.