Alabama’s state legislature has just weeks to redraw its congressional map to include a second district with a black voter majority, or close to it, a three-judge panel decided Friday, according to the Alabama Political Reporter.
The Supreme Court recently struck down Alabama’s map as a violation of the Voting Rights Act in a 5-4 ruling, requiring new maps to be drawn to include a second district where black voters comprise the majority or close to it. The July 21 deadline set by the panel during a Friday status conference was given to ensure candidates have time to meet qualifying and certification deadlines for the 2024 election, according to the Alabama Political Reporter.
With Alabama’s primary scheduled for March 5, 2023, the maps must be redrawn quickly. (RELATED: Did The Supreme Court Just Hand Democrats The Keys To Winning The House?)
Today, the Court ruled that Alabama likely violated the Voting Rights Act by drawing a map that diluted Black votes in the state. The right to vote and have that vote counted is sacred and fundamental — it is the right from which all of our other rights spring. Key to that right…
— President Biden (@POTUS) June 8, 2023
Republican Gov. Kay Ivey will need to call the legislature for a special session in July to meet the deadline. After approval by the legislature, the new maps would then need to be approved by the court, according to the Alabama Political Reporter.
“We are reviewing the outcome and are in discussions,” Office of Governor Kay Ivey Communications Director Gina Maiola told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
If plaintiffs disagree with the map lawmakers ultimately adopt, they will “file objections” and potentially an “alternative map,” Deuel Ross, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. attorney who argued the case before the Supreme Court, told The Associated Press.
“The time constraints that are upon us are very real,” U.S. Circuit Judge Stanley Marcus said, per the outlet.
States redraw their congressional maps every ten years following the census, beginning early in the year and often taking the rest of the year or longer to finish.
Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Brett Kavanaugh, Sonia Sotomayor, Elenea Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson sided with black voters and organizations like the NAACP who filed the lawsuit in their June 9 ruling.
This article has been updated with comment from the Office of Governor Kay Ivey.
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