Wednesday, May 27, 2015

One Vote Makes All The Difference

Today the Supreme Court agreed to hear a Texas case later this year that could rewrite the political map for Latinos in states with a large number of undocumented residents.

Since the 1960s, the high court has enforced the "one person, one vote" rule to require that election districts be roughly equal in population. This rule is based on the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment. and it is applied to all election districts, whether for members of Congress, state legislators, county supervisors or local school boards.
At least once a decade, these districts may be redrawn based on new census data. The U.S. Census Bureau seeks to count the total population, including noncitizens and immigrants in the country illegally. 
In its appeal, the Project on Fair Representation based in Austin, Texas, says the districts should be balanced based on the number of eligible voters. The group sued on behalf of Sue Evenwel, a leader of the Texas Republican Party. She lives in Titus County in east Texas, where her state Senate district had 533,010 citizens of voting age in 2011. However, another Senate district had 372,00 citizens of voting age. 
The appeal in Evenwel vs. Abbott argues that her right to an equal vote is being denied because Texas officials relied on the census data to balance the districts. Requiring states to switch to counting only citizens will "ensure that voters are afforded the basic right to an equal vote," her lawyers said.

Forcing states like California and Texas to rewrite districts based on citizens versus residents brings up all sorts of second-order shenanigans, the one off the top of my head is again, forcing these states to identify the undocumented rather than relying on estimates and then deporting them en masse. There's a lot of messy things that could result from a SCOTUS order along those lines.

We'll see where this goes, but this seems on first pass like yet another GOP attempt to harm minority voters through the Well Actually process.


Scopedog said...

Well actually, this is yet more proof that 1) elections do matter and 2) the Supreme Court matters.

Of course, to those who still insist that both parties are the same and President Obama and Hillary are GOP shills and that Bernie Sanders will fix everything with a snap of his fingers....well, actually the sentence above will go right over their heads.

Horace Boothroyd III said...

Ain't that the truth. And yet, while you and I and Zandar stand watch against the strong possibility of a GOP sweep in 2016 that would unleash the demons of Hell in a holocaust to make G Dubya look like s'mores at summer camp, the hysterical ninnies at the Daily Kos are openly plotting their alliance with the Libertarians and the Teabaggers - this time on the grounds that GMOs will kill us all if Hillary the Corporatist Shill is not stopped in time. Now, maybe Senator Clinton is a corporatist sell out and maybe GMOs are going to kill us all in the long run, but for certain we are fast tracked to life in hell if we put the teabaggers in charge under the mistaken impression that we can simply throw them under the bus when they are no longer useful. That is as dumb as thinking the purity trolls can simply take over the party in support of Bernie's quixotic run for the nomination only to throw it back under the bus when the time comes go back into bomb throwing vandal mode - no harm, no foul, amirite?

Related Posts with Thumbnails