US News: SCOTUS Debates Gerrymandering


In what could be the most consequential case it has heard in years, the Supreme Court on Tuesday wrestled with complex legal arguments in a matter that boils down to a simple yet profound question: Should it step in and stop hyper-partisan political gerrymandering?

To the bipartisan coalition of plaintiffs who sued Wisconsin over its 2011 redistricting maps, however, nothing less than the future of American democracy hinges on the answer.

If the court refuses to intervene, "the [subsequent] festival of extreme gerrymandering will be like nothing you've seen," Paul Smith, an attorney with the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center, representing voters in Gill v. Whitford, told the justices. As a result, he added, "The country is going to lose faith in democracy, day by day" with millions of disenfranchised voters and dire, perhaps irreversible consequences.

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