The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is scheduled to take up League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, a case asking the court to revisit the electoral map instituted by Pennsylvania legislators and then-Gov. Tom Corbett in 2011.
The case, which will have implications for every voter in Pennsylvania, alleges that our current district lines are so gerrymandered that they threaten to undermine our democracy. Gerrymandering refers to the practice of manipulating district lines to the advantage one political party.
The ongoing case is causing chaos in state elections. The article written by Marc Levy from the Associated Press, Gerrymandering case sows doubt in big year for House races, has more information. Take a look:
Lots of people want to run for Congress in Pennsylvania this year, but they may not yet know which district they live in. The prospect that the state Supreme Court could decide a high-profile gerrymandering case by ordering new boundaries for Pennsylvania’s 18 congressional districts, including one that has been described as looking like “Goofy kicking Donald Duck,” is sowing uncertainty barely a month before candidates begin circulating petitions.
Primary fields could be jam-packed, driven by Democrats’ anti-Trump fervor and a rush to fill the most open seats in Pennsylvania in decades. More than 60 people, including 14 sitting U.S. House members, are either committed to running or are kicking the tires on a run, even as district boundaries could get a major overhaul.
The pending decision from the U.S. Supreme Court on a landmark gerrymandering case is another factor at play. From the article titled, Gerrymandering clogging courts, by the News-Gazette:
Whatever the result, the court’s ruling will represent a major political and legal event, its effect felt for years to come. But even as the high court contemplates the issue, one that stems from disputed state legislative elections in Wisconsin, lower federal courts continue to hear arguments involving similar disputes in other states and render conflicting decisions on the constitutionality of gerrymandering.
A federal court panel in North Carolina recently struck down as unconstitutional congressional districts drawn by Republicans on the grounds that they are excessively and unconstitutionally partisan. At the same time, another panel of federal judges upheld partisan districts drawn by Republicans in Pennsylvania.
Also see DC’s collection of redistricting news for the latest nationwide.