a ruling late friday by a three-judge panel in san antonio said republicans gerrymandered some congressional districts. the judges' two-to-one decision could be appealed by texas to the u.s. supreme court.
republicans hold two of three congressional districts ruled newly invalid. they were found to have been partly drawn with discriminatory intent against black and brown people. the gop-controlled texas legislature approved the maps in 2011 - the same year then, governor rick perry signed voter id laws.
judges noted the "strong racial tension and heated debate about latinos, spanish-speaking people, undocumented immigrants and sanctuary cities" which served as the backdrop in the legislature of texas upon adopting the maps and voter id laws.
u.s. district judges orlando garcia and xavier rodriguez wrote in their opinion, "the record indicates not just a hostility toward democrat districts, but a hostility toward minority districts, and a willingness to use race for partisan advantage."
njna perales, vice president of litigation for the mexican american legal defense and educational fund, and legal counsel on the case, welcomed the ruling. perales said, "the court's decision exposes the texas legislature's illegal effort to dilute the vote of texas latinos. moving forward, the ruling will help protect latinos from manipulation of district lines in order to reduce their political clout."
hispanics fueled texas' dramatic growth in the 2010 census - the year before the maps were drawn - by accounting for 67% of its new residents. texas was forced ahead of the november election to weaken its voter id laws, which allow concealed handgun licenses, but not college student ids, after a federal appeals court found the requirements to be discriminatory.
- mark j. tuggle
- harlem, usa
- same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. firstname.lastname@example.org.