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Texas Redistricting Plan Intentionally Discriminatory, Court Finds

Texas Redistricting Plan Intentionally Discriminatory, Court Finds

A three-judge panel of federal judges unanimously ruled yesterday that a redistricting plan signed by Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) intentionally discriminated against Hispanic voters.

As reported by Talking Points Memo, the judges were “overwhelmed” with the amount of evidence showing the Texas redistricting plan was intentionally discriminatory, noting in a footnote that the parties provided “more evidence of discriminatory intent than we have space, or need, to address here.”

The state’s redistricting battle has taken many twists and turns. All three redistricting plans, the one for Texas’ congressional seats, its state House of Representatives as well as the state Senate were blocked by the federal court after it found that “surgery” had been performed on the congressional districts belonging to minority members of Congress while no similar alternations were made to districts represented by incumbent white members of Congress.

“Anglo district boundaries were redrawn to include particular country clubs and, in one case, the school belonging to the incumbent’s grandchildren,” the judges wrote. The country club reference is tied to Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), who chairs the House Oversight Committee that oversees the Justice Department. According to reports, a lawyer for Smith had requested that a country club be moved out of a Hispanic district and into his.

The ruling is a significant win for voting rights activists and a blow to Republicans who have allegations of racism and intentional discrimination dogging them with nearly every policy proposal they make–and with good reason. Their leadership at the state and national level has made it clear that the GOP is concerned with the plight of the rich white man and that it intends to do whatever is necessary to protect those interests. Gerrymandering is simply a tool in their toolbox to achieve their goal or re-concentrating power into the hands of a few wealthy elites. Thankfully at least one federal court is unwilling to let them do so.

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50 comments

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7:56PM PDT on Sep 16, 2012

Well, you folks who have spoken harsh, blasting, and accusing words about "Texans".....Like Tricia H., I am natural born and raised in Texan, and I am not an animal killer, I right now house 9 dogs, 4 of which are rescued dogs., I am an avid fighter the voiceless, ie., Wolves, Buffalos, Mustangs, etc,etc. And....I am NOT a racist! I have lived in 4 other States during my life on this Earth and some of my best friends were African American, Asian descent, Mexican, and the list goes on. I did NOT vote for Rick Perry. He has done some good for Texas and he has done some things while in office he should be totally ashamed of. He has cost the tax payers here much. But he has also brought much to our State. There is always going to be the good and the bad reguardless of who gets into office. They are after all.....POLITICIANS! Don't blast all Texas or judge us by who is in our offices. Would you like for us to examine your State and tell you what we might think of you.....no you wouldn't and personally you deal with your problems and we shall deal with ours. All of you have a nice day, get a good nights rest and start your Monday morning on a positive note,....PLEASE!

2:12PM PDT on Sep 9, 2012

I don't believe anything Texas says all they do is kill animals and hate every race on earth!!

11:03PM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

Oh, NO! Who could believe THAT?

6:09AM PDT on Aug 31, 2012

Intentional discrimination? Tell me it ain't so....where the deer and antelope play, good ole boys rule, and women are content to be barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen......what a shocking discovery in Texas.

11:30PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

Nothings done in haste, scorn beheld for the you shall reap your fate.

10:50PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

Of course the efforts at redistricing are intentionally discriminatory, the Repubs know damned well they cannot win fairly, their only hope is to lie and cheat and stack the cards in any possible way they can. That is no surprise, the surprise is the court smacking them down and calling them out for it.

9:24PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

All gerrymandering is intentionally discriminatory, what else is new? I would suggest that Perry gets to be a passenger on the next Mars probe.

3:20PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

thank you Marianne C. that was fun to read....lol I can't send you another star. :( but I would if I could. :)

It's about time to restrict the outrageous actions of the repubs. They are for the rich by the rich. The rest of the country needs to be included in the over all view of our country. The rich forgot we are the reason they are rich. Just as Elizabeth Warren has said...they didn't get rich by themselves.

They need a good reminder of this. Vote and show where this country stands.

3:16PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

thank you Marianne C. that was fun to read....lol

It's about time to restrict the outrageous actions of the repubs. They are for the rich by the rich. The rest of the country needs to be included in the over all view of our country. The rich forgot we are the reason they are rich. Just as Elizabeth Warren has said...they didn't get rich by themselves.

They need a good reminder of this. Vote and show where this country stands.

2:56PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

Adam S- seriously, are you a paid GOP operative like Steve R?

Marianne C-- Thank you! You always have intelligent and well thought explanations.



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