Parties in in North Carolina Partisan Gerrymandering Case Spar Over Whether U.S. Supreme Court Should Hear Case or Remand the Case Following Gill

The Court had the case on its conference docket for today, but it is possible these supplemental briefs will further delay disposition of the case.

Jun 19 2018 Second supplemental brief of appellees Common Cause, et al. filed. (Distributed)
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Jun 20 2018 Supplemental brief of appellees League of Women Voters of North Carolina, et al. filed. (Distributed)
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Jun 20 2018 Supplemental brief of appellants Robert A. Rucho, et al. filed. (Distributed)
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I discussed in my recent Slate piece about Gill how the North Carolina case could be the next vehicle to consider these issues, though it might face a remand to reconsider standing questions in light of Gill.

Paul Clement, defending the state general assembly, has been arguing that there’s a standing problem (and therefore remand in light of Gill is appropriate). But here’s his “To be sure” paragraph that makes his argument tough:

To be sure, the district court concluded in the alternative that “Plaintiffs have standing to challenge the 2016 Plan as a whole … [e]ven absent statewide standing, because Plaintiffs reside in each of the state’s thirteen districts and have all suffered injuries-in-fact.” JS.App.45; see also JS.App.40-41 n.9. But just like the plaintiffs in Gill, the plaintiffs here did not “meaningfully pursue their allegations of individual harm”; instead, they “rested their case … on their theory of statewide injury.” Gill, slip op. 18. Indeed, the League plaintiffs have never suggested that they had an individualized theory; they have just adamantly defended their statewide theory, insisting that “it would be incongruous to force challenges to the Plan to proceed district-by-district.” LWV.Mot.27; see also CC.Mot.15 (“the League of Women Voters plaintiffs proceeded only on a statewide theory’’ (alteration omitted)).

Bottom line: The Court can kick the case back or take it as it wishes, meaning a lot rides on Justice Kennedy for a change.

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