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Alabama court rules for congressional map to be redrawn, will boost Democrats’ chances to win 2024



Georgia Voting

On Tuesday, a panel of federal judges ruled that Alabama’s “Republican-backed congressional map illegally dilutes Black residents’ voting power and must be redrawn” reports Reuters. A court-appointed special master will be tasked with creating a new map ahead of next year’s vote, which is expected to significantly boost Democrats’ chances to win back the majority in the U.S. House of Representatives in the 2024 election.

The three-judge panel in Birmingham wrote it will have a court-appointed special master draw the new map instead of throwing out a congressional plan enacted by the Republican-controlled state legislature, for a third time.

“We have now said twice that this Voting Rights Act case is not close,” the judges wrote. “And we are deeply troubled that the State enacted a map that the State readily admits does not provide the remedy we said federal law requires.”

The panel first intervened in 2022, ruling that an earlier Republican plan was illegal. After the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the panel’s decision in June, the Birmingham court ordered Alabama legislators to create a second district with either a Black majority or “something quite close” to comply with the Voting Rights Act. The law bars lawmakers from drawing district lines in a manner that discriminates against minority voters.

Reuters writes:

The latest plan increased the number of Black voters in a second district but fell far short of a majority, prompting civil rights groups to challenge the new map in court once again.
The Alabama case is among 
several legal battles over redistricting that could result in new congressional maps in at least half a dozen states, enough to determine congressional control in the November 2024 election. Republicans currently hold a slim 222-213 majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“Alabama openly admits its intention to defy the law and the U.S. Supreme Court,” the plaintiffs who challenged Alabama’s map, including the state chapter of the NAACP, said in a joint statement. “But we will not back down.”

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