It’s always gerrymandering when it’s not your party drawing the maps.
All court actions challenging the controversial Pennsylvania Congressional redistricting maps were shot down Monday. Early Monday, a three-judge federal panel rejected a Republican challenge to the new maps, which could cost the GOP as many as four Congressional seats.
BREAKING: Three-judge panel rejects Republican bid to block new Pennsylvania congressional voting map. Only thing left is stay application at #Scotus. pic.twitter.com/NF6QDUNH63
— Greg Stohr (@GregStohr) March 19, 2018
The last hope of overturning the new maps rested in the hands of the Supreme Court, where a request for stay had been filed. But it was not to be. Just a few hours later, SCOTUS denied the request for stay without dissent or comment.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday denied Pennsylvania Republicans’ request to stop the imposition of new congressional districts ahead of the 2018 midterms.
A statement from the court said a request to stay a ruling from the Pennsylvania state Supreme Court had been denied without comment or recorded dissent. The state Supreme Court ruled the previous map, drawn by Republicans in the state legislature and signed into law in 2011 by then-GOP Gov. Tom Corbett, was a partisan gerrymander that violated the state’s constitution.
The court’s statement followed an order from a three-judge federal panel earlier Monday turning down a Republican request to halt the new map — essentially leaving Republicans with little recourse to stop the new district lines before the May 15 primary elections.
The filing deadline for candidates running under the new map is Tuesday. The new map, drawn by the state Supreme Court, weakens Republicans’ hold on a number of seats, especially in the Philadelphia suburbs.
The challenge to the maps was made for this very reason:
Behind the scenes, Republican consultants prepared their clients for the new maps to stand, even as GOP congressmen and state legislative leaders sought relief from the courts. One GOP incumbent who saw his district become more Democratic under the new lines, Rep. Ryan Costello (R-Pa.), is reportedly considering retiring rather than filing for reelection before Tuesday’s deadline.
The media and Democrats are pouring tremendous resources into Pennsylvania in the hopes of proving the 2016 Trump-dominated rust belt is no longer Trump country. Nevertheless, it’s always gerrymandering when it’s not your party drawing the maps.