The Supreme Court today issued rulings in two partisan gerrymandering cases: Gill v. Whitford and Benisek v. Lamone. The American Civil Liberties Union filed briefs in both cases supporting the challengers to partisan gerrymandering.
“The Supreme Court missed an opportunity today to lay down a firm marker as to when partisan gerrymandering is so extreme that it violates the constitutional rights of voters. But the court permitted lawsuits against unfair maps to continue,” said Dale Ho, director of the ACLU’s Voting Rights Project. “Cases around the country — including our challenge to Ohio’s gerrymandered congressional map — will remain ongoing to ensure that voters’ voices are heard.”
“We are disappointed that the U.S. Supreme Court did not rule on the merits of this case. We had hoped that our country’s highest court would use this case from Wisconsin to make clear that those in power cannot draw unfair district maps designed to keep themselves and other members of their party in office,” said ACLU of Wisconsin board member James Hall, Jr. who was part of the group that conceived of and assembled the case before the high court.
“In Wisconsin, voting rights have been under attack for years—for example, by the voter ID law that the ACLU continues to challenge, and restrictions on voter registration,” said Molly McGrath, ACLU Voting Rights Project. “Wisconsin residents who have questions about voting—or who need help getting an ID to vote for important elections later this year and beyond—can contact the ACLU’s volunteer voter assistance network at 608-285-2141.”
“If the court will not give us fair maps, it is going to be up to all of us to pressure our lawmakers to have our maps drawn by independent commissions. Today's decision brought the battle for fair maps from the courts to the streets, and the ACLU will continue to work with partners until we get fair maps,” said Chris Ott, ACLU of Wisconsin executive director. “Sign up at www.peoplepower.org, and pledge to be an ACLU voter. Our elected officials should know that voters will hold them accountable.”
We hope the Court takes the opportunity in the next term to make clear that voters choose their representatives and not the other way around.
The rulings are at: