U.S. Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday partly stayed a lower court decision in a redistricting case from North Carolina that involved allegations of racial gerrymandering.
The stay remains in effect while the court considers whether to grant cert in the case involving state legislative districts, report the New York Times, SCOTUSblog, the Associated Press and the News & Observer. How Appealing links to the Supreme Court order.
The Supreme Court blocked redrawn districts in Wake and Mecklenburg counties, but not in six others. The stayed districts had been found to violate a North Carolina constitutional provision regulating the timing of redistricting, while the others were found to be unconstitutional racial gerrymanders, according to the AP and SCOTUSblog stories.
State lawmakers said in their emergency petition to the U.S. Supreme Court that the district court engaged in a “hostile takeover of the state redistricting process.” The lower court—a three-judge district panel— ruled that the state legislative map that replaced an earlier unconstitutional map was still affected by racial bias.
The Times notes a three-way split among the Supreme Court justices. Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. would have granted the entire request while Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor would have denied the entire request. The other five justices appeared in favor of the partial stay.
Last month the U.S. Supreme Court temporarily blocked another North Carolina map of congressional districts that had been struck down as a partisan gerrymander.