Supreme Court hears gerrymandering case stemming out of Wisconsin

Supreme Court hears gerrymandering case stemming out of Wisconsin

And 25 million of those workers can't even sue as class members, either, Ortiz told Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Anthony Kennedy, the court's "swing vote".

The Supreme Court opened a high-profile term earlier this week with a case about employees' rights that could affect an estimated 25 million workers.

Coupled with Kennedy's questioning about gerrymandering and the first amendment issue, Lithwhick and Grossman's analysis, this bodes very badly for partisan gerrymandering.

The court now faces an unenviable decision.

At issue are maps drawn in Wisconsin after the last census that Democrats say were drawn unconstitutionally to benefit Republicans.

And, as might be expected, questions from several of the Republican-named jurists showed them seeking to preserve political gerrymanders. The results - that many states' district maps offer certain political parties disproportionate advantages - is unsurprising.

WASHINGTON-Ever since the early 1800s, US politicians have practiced gerrymandering, the long and dishonorable practice of lawmakers drawing legislative districts to entrench themselves and their party in power. Back row, standing, from left are, Associate Justice Elena Kagan, Associate Justice Samuel Alito Jr., Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch.

Justice Ginsburg asked the Solicitor, "What about the reality?" What becomes of the "precious right to vote, if you can stack a legislature?" He was among the hundreds of protesters for fair elections gathered outside the U.S. Supreme Court building as the court heard arguments about partisan gerrymandering on Tuesday, Oct. 3. Mr Kennedy did not join his colleagues' attack on the social sciences.

The newcomer on the court, Gorsuch, will also be under the microscope in his first full session. But to some court watchers, the chief justice's concern was ignoring the reality that many Americans see the court as a political body as is.

The case before the Supreme Court is actually a consolidation of three different court cases: Epic Systems Corp v. Lewis, Ernst & Young, et al v. Morris and the National Labor Relations Board v. Murphy Oil USA, Inc.

"Control of the (Texas) House that would be the biggest change", here, University of Houston political scientist Brandon Rottinghaus said.

Does partisan gerrymandering violate the Constitution? The problem is if the court should police the practice and if so is there a workable standard the court can apply?

As Paul Smith stated in a stirring conclusion to his argument, "We're here telling you that you are the only institution in the United States that can solve this problem, just as democracy is about to get worse because of the way gerrymandering is getting so much worse". "And that's going to come out one case after another as these cases are brought in every state", Roberts added. Lower courts had agreed with the Democrats. In Wisconsin, the line-drawing after the 2010 census was so slick that in the next election the GOP won less than 49 percent of the vote but wound up with almost 60 percent of the seats in the state legislature's lower house. Ironically, however, a ruling in their favor could help the GOP in the next round of redistricting. The court relied upon a three-part legal standard based on discriminatory intent, discriminatory effect and the justification for the law. In fact, the court recognized in the 1986 case Davis v. Bandemer, that it had constitutional authority to intervene in cases of partisan redistricting, but refused to do so without some clear metric with which to inform their decision. He said little during Tuesday's argument to indicate how he would vote.

Republicans like Malone are on the short end of the gerrymandering stick in Maryland.

And in a brief signed by Arizona Republican Sen.

Challengers argue that the new maps amounted to unconstitutional and partisan gerrymandering.



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