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Supreme Court rules to not get involved in gerrymandering

Ruling comes on final day of high court's decisions

WASHINGTON – As U.S. Supreme Court rulings normally go, Thursday’s decision on gerrymandering was relatively simple.

The ruling said, in effect, that it’s not their business to get involved in it.

Chief Justice John Roberts, who wrote the majority opinion, said, "Federal judges have no license to reallocate political power between two major political parties, with no plausible grant of authority in the constitution, and no legal standards to limit and direct their decisions."

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St. Mary's University School of Law professor Al Kauffman said, "This opinion means that they’ll be able to even more use partisanship as the basis for redistricting."

Kauffman was discussing the impact the ruling will have on redistricting in Texas.

The dissenting opinion, was written by Justice Elena Kagan.

"For the first time ever, this court refuses to remedy a constitutional violation because it thinks the task beyond judicial capabilities," Kagan said.

Kauffman noted that though this is a Supreme Court ruling, there are still remedies including congressional action on congressional races, and the state could pass legislation prohibiting the use of partisanship in drawing districts.

The next redistricting will come in 2021 following next year’s census.


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