(DCWatchdog.com) – Republicans suffered a significant defeat at the United States Supreme Court after the highest court in the land nixed Alabama’s request to uphold its new congressional map drawn by the state’s GOP-controlled legislature.
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court sided with Democrats by refusing to change a lower court’s ruling against Alabama’s newly proposed congressional redistricting due to alleged violations of the Voting Rights Act.
“The court-driven mapmaking process happening now will likely result in Alabama adding an additional black — and Democratic — member of Congress,” Politico comments in a report.
The Republican-dominated legislature of Alabama passed the new congressional map earlier this year, but a lower federal court ruled that it should feature two House districts with black majorities.
The state of Alabama appealed by asking the US Supreme Court to block that order. However, the Supreme Court justices’ refusal to do so now means that the congressional map would have to be redrawn.
“Alabama’s open defiance of the Voting Rights Act stops today,” reacted Abha Khanna, a prominent Democratic attorney representing one of the plaintiffs.
“We hope that yet another federal court order will prompt Alabama to rethink their dogged resistance to providing equal political opportunities to Black Alabamians,” she added.
The report notes that Alabama has seven congressional districts, but only one is majority-black, even though African Americans comprise a quarter of the state’s population.
Politico also notes that in an earlier ruling in the court battle that has dragged on since 2022, the US Supreme Court upheld the lower court’s decision to invalidate Alabama’s congressional map.
“[That was] a surprise for many court watchers, who anticipated the court would use the case to further weaken the Voting Rights Act,” the pro-left news outlet comments.
It also points out that a “lengthy statement” that Alabama’s GOP Attorney General Steve Marshall issued on Tuesday recognized that the US Supreme Court’s decision would necessitate redrawing the congressional districts.
At the same time, Marshall stated he would keep defending the state’s 2023 congressional map because court-drawn maps reduced the state’s residents “to skin color alone.”
Each one of three newly proposed maps for Alabama’s congressional districts “would likely lead to a second Democrat being elected,” Politico predicts.
Presently, only one Alabama US representative is a Democrat, Rep. Terri Sewell, who comes from its only black-majority district.