Could Pennsylvania’s gerrymandering battle be coming to an end?
State Republican leaders said they’ve agreed on a redrawn congressional district map.
The revised map is now in the hands of Governor Tom Wolf.
The governor says he plans to review it, and depending on his decision, new congressional districts could soon be set in Pennsylvania.
The case has seen many twists and turns, and the end could be near, but depending upon next steps from the governor; the state supreme court; and republican leaders, only time will tell.
February 9th, 2018, state republican leaders delivered on deadline their plan for what could become a new congressional map for Pennsylvania.
House speaker Mike Turzai said ” we got input from our members, and from Senate members, on the Republican side, and together the Republican Senate and the Republican House have submitted a map.”
These districts were carved out on the congressional map after the 2010 census and approved by the general assembly. Congressional districts determine who gets to represent Pennsylvania in Washington D.C.
Fast forward to 2017, the Pennsylvania League of Women Voters filed a lawsuit that that map gave Republicans an unfair advantage. Eventually, the case made it’s way to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
“They should have challenged these maps after 2011, and they’re challenging them now. Then, a 5-2 Democratic vote on the Pennsylvania Supreme court invalidates our map, it’s completely wrong,” Turzai said.
In any event, Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati and House speaker Mike Turzai met the court’s deadline and submitted a map to Governor Wolf Friday night.
“The governor is supposed to accept the map or not accept the map, and we have adhered to the order, but I will tell you that we do not believe that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court had the power to do what it did, particularly given the partisan nature of their decision,” Turzai said.
Gov. Wolf’s office released this statement on the map submitted Friday.
“Governor Wolf will review Speaker Turzai and President Scarnati`s submission in consultation with the experts retained by the administration to determine his next course of action.”
The governor has until Thursday, February 15th to approve the map or not, otherwise it will be up to the state supreme court to draw the lines.
Republican leaders are not giving up the fight
“Once we see what the supreme court does, we will look at our other remedies, we may be very well back in federal court,” Turzai said.
The governor will have until Thursday, February 15th to review the map, but if he doesn’t approve it, the state Supreme Court will draw up a new map just four days later, by February 19th.