maps in other states could be affected by the court ruling on Black political power

The Supreme Court Rules that a Republican-drawn metro Atlanta congressional district is whiter than a state of the Gulf Coast, and that the Voting Rights Act could be violated

They noted, for example, that the legislature had no difficulty in creating a second majority black district for the state school board, and it could have done something similar to create a second majority black congressional district along the Gulf Coast.

In Georgia, plaintiffs in a case there argue that Republican-drawn maps made a metro Atlanta district whiter and friendlier to the GOP — despite people of color driving the state’s population growth. There was a judge who said last year that it was too late to change the maps because they may violate the Voting Rights Act.

At issue was Alabama’s congressional redistricting plan, adopted by the Republican dominated state legislature after the 2020 census. Minority voters in the state have a shot at electing a candidate in only one of the seven congressional districts, because of the way the district lines are drawn.

The opinion does not “diminish or disregard the concern” that the VRA “may impermissibly elevate race in the allocation of political power within the States,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote for the majority. “Instead, the Court simply holds that a faithful application of precedent and a fair reading of the record do not bear those concerns out here.”

Reed spoke in front of a map that he called a near- perfect plan. The existing map has seven districts, with one majority-Black representative. This new map showed two majority-Black districts.

GOP Secretary of State Wes Allen said in a statement: “I am disappointed in today’s Supreme Court opinion but it remains the commitment of the Secretary of State’s Office to comply with all applicable election laws.”

In the South there are challenges to congressional maps where the Voting Rights Act would apply.

Redone maps could result, according to some experts, in a few more majority-Black and Democratic seats in the House, so that could shift power in Washington, D.C. — and in areas throughout the South.

Evan Milligan, the executive director of AlabamaForward, said that they will continue to organize to make sure representative maps are drawn in a way that includes the Black and Brown communities.

Joe Reed, chairman of the Alabama Democratic Conference, was also happy with the ruling, which gives Black Democrats a chance at a second congressional seat in the state.

“The point of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act emphasizes that you cannot dilute political voting power,” said JaTaune Bosby Gilchrist, executive director of the ACLU of Alabama. This was a reduction of Black political voting power in the state.

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