From Texas Redistricting:
The State of Texas filed a motion [Wednesday] afternoon with the three-judge panel in the Texas redistricting case, asking the panel to give the state permission to appeal the panel’s March 10 ruling on the state’s 2011 congressional plan (Plan C185) to the Fifth Circuit.
Texas told the court that it sought review of the panel’s decision that claims about the 2011 map had not been mooted by the state’s adoption of a new congressional map in 2013. Texas said that appeal to the Fifth Circuit, rather than the Supreme Court, was appropriate in this instance because the panel’s “Order is not final and does not grant or deny an injunction” and “is therefore ‘is one of the relatively rare situations in which a Court of Appeals is required to review the decision of a three-judge District Court.”
The motion said the redistricting plaintiffs opposed the request.
The three-judge panel in the Texas redistricting case has set oral argument for April 27 on the request of the State of Texas for leave to appeal the panel’s March 10 congressional plan ruling to the Fifth Circuit.
In that ruling, the court found that a number of districts in the state’s 2011 congressional plan were intentionally discriminatory and/or otherwise violated the Constitution or the Voting Rights Act. The state contends that disputes about the 2011 map were mooted by the Texas Legislature’s adoption of the court-drawn interim plan on a permanent basis in 2013. The plaintiffs sharply disagree, arguing that a number of districts in the two plans are identical and also that questions of discriminatory intent are relevant to whether Texas should be put back under preclearance review using the bail-in provisions of section 3 of the Voting Rights Act.
The court’s order setting oral argument directed that the plaintiffs respond to state’s request to appeal by Friday, April 21, and gave the state until Tuesday, April 25, to file a reply.
Basically, we’ll know more about where things are headed after the hearing on the 27th. And may I say, it’s such a pleasure to see Michael Li updating his blog again.