“The Supreme Court’s Voting Rights Decision Is Even Better Than It Looks”

Rick Pildes wrote this piece for Slate on how plaintiffs may harness new redistricting technology to bring more successful Section 2 claims after Milligan:

This new technology makes it possible to find VRA districts that might have been hard to identify in the past. That’s why there have been new challenges after the 2020 round of redistricting under the VRA in a number of Southern states, such as Georgia and Louisiana. In the wake of the Supreme Court decision, we will now have to see how many of those also turn out to be successful. Thus, from a legal perspective, the court’s decision reaffirms the framework the court first established in Thornburg v. Gingles. But when new technology is applied to that framework, it is going to generate additional VRA districts, as it did in Alabama. Because the court’s decision permits these technological advances to identify new, reasonably configured VRA districts where voting is racially polarized, the practical effect of Milligan is to increase the power and the scope of the VRA in the redistricting context.

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