Breaking: Unanimous 3-Judge Federal Court Strikes Down 27 Michigan Districts (Some Congressional) as Partisan Gerrymanders

You can find the unanimous 146-page decision at this link.

The court embraced both an equal protection theory and a First Amendment theory, the two main theories the Supreme Court is considering in the pending partisan gerrymandering cases out of North Carolina and Maryland.

Here’s a list of which districts are affected and subject to a remedial order if the Michigan legislature does not act (and unless stayed or reversed by the Supreme Court—a stay seems likely pending outcome of the NC/Md cases):

The Court concludes that the following Challenged Districts constitute unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders, in violation of the First and Fourteenth Amendments, because they dilute the votes of Democratic voters: Congressional Districts 1, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12; Senate Districts 8, 11, 12, 14, 18, 27, and 36; and House Districts 24, 32, 51, 55, 60, 63, 75, 83, 91, 94, and 95.

The Court finds that Plaintiffs have failed to establish that Senate Districts 10, 22, and 32, and House Districts 52, 62, 76, and 92 are unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders under a vote dilution theory….

We find that Plaintiffs have proven their First Amendment association claim with respect to every Challenged District. Because Plaintiffs’ First Amendment association claim does not require proving vote-dilution in a given district, Plaintiffs have established that every Challenged
District violates their First Amendment association right, including those Challenged Districts—specifically, Senate Districts 10, 22, and 32, and House Districts 52, 62, 76, and 92—for which Plaintiffs failed to demonstrate unconstitutional vote-dilution.

This post has been updated.

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