North Carolina’s Partisan Gerrymandering Plaintiffs File Final Brief with U.S. Supreme Court Ahead of Oral Arguments Later This Month
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Plaintiffs in Rucho v. League of Women Voters of North Carolina filed their final brief with the U.S. Supreme Court today, just more than three weeks before the Court is slated to hear oral arguments in the partisan gerrymandering cases out of North Carolina and Maryland on March 26. Lower court victories for the plaintiffs in North Carolina mark the first time an entire state’s congressional plan has been struck down for being an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander.
Campaign Legal Center (CLC), the Southern Coalition for Social Justice (SCSJ), and University of Chicago Professor Nicholas Stephanopoulos represent the League of Women Voters of North Carolina and 12 individual North Carolina plaintiffs in the case, Rucho v. League of Women Voters of North Carolina. The Supreme Court will simultaneously hear a companion case, Rucho v. Common Cause.
“Citizens in all 50 states deserve to be able to choose their representatives – and not the other way around. This is why we need a national solution, and why we look forward to bringing the fight for fair maps to the U.S. Supreme Court this month,” said Paul Smith, vice president of CLC. “It is time for the U.S. Supreme Court to act. They have a golden opportunity to enforce the Constitution in a manner that will rein in partisan gerrymandering – done by both parties – and create ground rules that safeguard the fundamental right of all Americans to have their vote count.
“This case cries out for intervention by the U.S. Supreme Court to rein in out-of-control partisan manipulation of the redistricting process,” said Allison Riggs, senior voting rights attorney for SCSJ. “You’d be hard-pressed to find a more blatant example of voters being denied their constitutional rights to equal protection under the law and to free speech than the North Carolina’s 2016 congressional redistricting plan. When legislators brag about their attempts to entrench themselves in political power, and enact maps designed to guarantee election winners before a single vote is cast, courts are the only hope for a remedy. These legislative actions are inconsistent with the basic principles of representative democracy that we hold so dear.”
"The League of Women Voters of NC is proud to be a plaintiff in this case that so clearly lays out the need for redistricting reform,” said Janet Hoy, co-president of the League of Women Voters of North Carolina. "We look forward to the time when NC will have constitutional districts and North Carolinians' votes will count in every election."