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Can we PLEASE get some action on redistricting?

From the Lone Star Project:

Earlier today, plaintiffs in the pending Texas congressional and state house redistricting case filed a motion with the presiding three-judge federal panel in San Antonio requesting a conference to discuss further action on the case.  The motion was jointly filed by the Quesada plaintiffs (supported by the Lone Star Project), NAACP, League of United Latin American Citizens and others.

The motion is straight-forward; it lays out that closing arguments on the claims against the 2011 maps originally adopted by the Texas Legislature were concluded on August 26, 2014, nearly two years ago.  The last action taken by the court simply clarified that it would not take any action that might disrupt the current 2016 elections.

Ideally, a conference will be ordered to lay out the timeline for further action on the case.  The motion notes that preparations for the 2018 elections begin in the fall of 2017, implying that action on the case is needed to prevent the possibility of impacting the 2018 election calendar.

In recent weeks, federal courts and judges on three separate occasions have struck down or ordered relief of voter ID laws, confirming that they discriminate against minority citizens in violation of the U.S. Voting Rights Act: A federal judge in Wisconsin ordered relief for Wisconsin’s discriminatory photo ID law; the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals – widely considered the most conservative federal court in the nation – struck down the Texas voter ID law; and, [Friday], the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the North Carolina voter suppression law.

Yes, it’s been two whole years since the trial over the 2011 State House maps came to an end. The trial over the 2011 Congressional maps ended a month later. And here we are, with no further action or even an indication that further action is forthcoming, even though last May we thought there might be. This is what the plaintiffs are asking for. Surely it is not too much to ask to have this matter concluded in time for the 2018 elections, is it? Rick Hasen has more.

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