What states allow mid-decade redistricting?
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September 27, 2022, 10:38:55 PM
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  What states allow mid-decade redistricting?
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Author Topic: What states allow mid-decade redistricting?  (Read 465 times)
ProgressiveModerate
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« on: September 16, 2022, 10:44:09 PM »

List I know do:

Georgia
North Carolina
Ohio (sorta, the current map only lasts 4 years but also a full commission via ballot initiatives could also redraw
Texas, but basically everyone in state government needs to sign off on it. If Rs feel their majorities are at risk they could redraw

The reason I ask is because there’s a good chance certain states partisan control will flip and also that if a gerrymander starts to backfire, the majority can just redraw as needed.
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Nyvin
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« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2022, 11:38:38 PM »
« Edited: September 16, 2022, 11:58:09 PM by Nyvin »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.
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ProgressiveModerate
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« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2022, 08:09:01 AM »
« Edited: September 17, 2022, 08:27:36 AM by ProgressiveModerate »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.
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Torie
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« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2022, 08:47:58 AM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.
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ProgressiveModerate
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« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2022, 09:03:23 AM »
« Edited: September 17, 2022, 09:07:52 AM by ProgressiveModerate »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)
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Mr.Phips
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« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2022, 09:22:03 AM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)

If Dems ever get control of the legislature in PA, the first thing they should do is put an independent redistricting commission on the ballot.  Given all they gave up in the 2019 election reform package (removal of straight ticket voting really hurt them), Wolf should have refused to sign any package that didn’t create an independent redistricting commission.
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Torie
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« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2022, 09:42:19 AM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)

If SCOTUS embraces ISLT (and I think the odds of that are considerably more than negligible), then a federal statute banning gerrymandering for CD's would be unconstitutional, and it might be unconstitutional on other grounds as to a ban of gerrymandering for state legislatures.

To add to the mess nobody can agree within very wide parameters as to what is a fair map,  and the metrics it entails, and academics have come up with flawed metrics that tend to screw the Pubs at the margins given current voting patterns, which the Pubs given their lack of intellectual fire power these days, have not fully understood, although they sense something is rotten in Denmark the way special master academics do their jobs.

So there is no easy way out of the box on this, as is the case on so many other issues, Putin, global warming, globalization, class and cultural tensions, you name it. And we have a political class ever less qualified to deal with much of this, given their respective bases. That is my point of view anyway. On my way out, I have become a glass is half empty downer sort of guy as to the prospects of the public square. It's sad, I know.

The ultimate way out of the box as to this issue is to go to a proportional system ala Germany (you have districts, but the division of the spoils is then equalized with proportionality based on overall percentages of the votes, a system I very much like actually). All we need is a Constitutional amendment to get there. Piece of cake, not, that as well, obviously.
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ProgressiveModerate
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« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2022, 12:28:07 PM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)

If SCOTUS embraces ISLT (and I think the odds of that are considerably more than negligible), then a federal statute banning gerrymandering for CD's would be unconstitutional, and it might be unconstitutional on other grounds as to a ban of gerrymandering for state legislatures.

To add to the mess nobody can agree within very wide parameters as to what is a fair map,  and the metrics it entails, and academics have come up with flawed metrics that tend to screw the Pubs at the margins given current voting patterns, which the Pubs given their lack of intellectual fire power these days, have not fully understood, although they sense something is rotten in Denmark the way special master academics do their jobs.

So there is no easy way out of the box on this, as is the case on so many other issues, Putin, global warming, globalization, class and cultural tensions, you name it. And we have a political class ever less qualified to deal with much of this, given their respective bases. That is my point of view anyway. On my way out, I have become a glass is half empty downer sort of guy as to the prospects of the public square. It's sad, I know.

The ultimate way out of the box as to this issue is to go to a proportional system ala Germany (you have districts, but the division of the spoils is then equalized with proportionality based on overall percentages of the votes, a system I very much like actually). All we need is a Constitutional amendment to get there. Piece of cake, not, that as well, obviously.


Would it though? I really doubt SCOTUS would just upfront say nothing having to do with elections can ever be governed at the federal level, and even if they did, Dems would likely have the votes to do "court reform" anyways. It's congress's authority to pass laws as they see fit, and while I'm not a scholar I'm not sure what part of the constitution an anti-gerrymandering bill would violate (rmbr though anti gerrymandering legislation can be written in many ways by forcing every state to establish a commission, creating a federal commission, or just putting out basic metrics maps must follow in terms of county splitting, compactness, and partisan fairness.

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Torie
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« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2022, 12:56:23 PM »
« Edited: September 17, 2022, 01:02:06 PM by Torie »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)

If SCOTUS embraces ISLT (and I think the odds of that are considerably more than negligible), then a federal statute banning gerrymandering for CD's would be unconstitutional, and it might be unconstitutional on other grounds as to a ban of gerrymandering for state legislatures.

To add to the mess nobody can agree within very wide parameters as to what is a fair map,  and the metrics it entails, and academics have come up with flawed metrics that tend to screw the Pubs at the margins given current voting patterns, which the Pubs given their lack of intellectual fire power these days, have not fully understood, although they sense something is rotten in Denmark the way special master academics do their jobs.

So there is no easy way out of the box on this, as is the case on so many other issues, Putin, global warming, globalization, class and cultural tensions, you name it. And we have a political class ever less qualified to deal with much of this, given their respective bases. That is my point of view anyway. On my way out, I have become a glass is half empty downer sort of guy as to the prospects of the public square. It's sad, I know.

The ultimate way out of the box as to this issue is to go to a proportional system ala Germany (you have districts, but the division of the spoils is then equalized with proportionality based on overall percentages of the votes, a system I very much like actually). All we need is a Constitutional amendment to get there. Piece of cake, not, that as well, obviously.


Would it though? I really doubt SCOTUS would just upfront say nothing having to do with elections can ever be governed at the federal level, and even if they did, Dems would likely have the votes to do "court reform" anyways. It's congress's authority to pass laws as they see fit, and while I'm not a scholar I'm not sure what part of the constitution an anti-gerrymandering bill would violate (rmbr though anti gerrymandering legislation can be written in many ways by forcing every state to establish a commission, creating a federal commission, or just putting out basic metrics maps must follow in terms of county splitting, compactness, and partisan fairness.



Sorry, Congress is not the state's legislature, so that bounces both state courts and Congress and federal courts. It is a very exclusive club.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Independent_state_legislature_theory

https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/independent-state-legislature-theory-explained

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/stake-supreme-court-battle-controversial-legal-theory-controls/story?id=88861468
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ProgressiveModerate
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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2022, 01:21:17 PM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)

If SCOTUS embraces ISLT (and I think the odds of that are considerably more than negligible), then a federal statute banning gerrymandering for CD's would be unconstitutional, and it might be unconstitutional on other grounds as to a ban of gerrymandering for state legislatures.

To add to the mess nobody can agree within very wide parameters as to what is a fair map,  and the metrics it entails, and academics have come up with flawed metrics that tend to screw the Pubs at the margins given current voting patterns, which the Pubs given their lack of intellectual fire power these days, have not fully understood, although they sense something is rotten in Denmark the way special master academics do their jobs.

So there is no easy way out of the box on this, as is the case on so many other issues, Putin, global warming, globalization, class and cultural tensions, you name it. And we have a political class ever less qualified to deal with much of this, given their respective bases. That is my point of view anyway. On my way out, I have become a glass is half empty downer sort of guy as to the prospects of the public square. It's sad, I know.

The ultimate way out of the box as to this issue is to go to a proportional system ala Germany (you have districts, but the division of the spoils is then equalized with proportionality based on overall percentages of the votes, a system I very much like actually). All we need is a Constitutional amendment to get there. Piece of cake, not, that as well, obviously.


Would it though? I really doubt SCOTUS would just upfront say nothing having to do with elections can ever be governed at the federal level, and even if they did, Dems would likely have the votes to do "court reform" anyways. It's congress's authority to pass laws as they see fit, and while I'm not a scholar I'm not sure what part of the constitution an anti-gerrymandering bill would violate (rmbr though anti gerrymandering legislation can be written in many ways by forcing every state to establish a commission, creating a federal commission, or just putting out basic metrics maps must follow in terms of county splitting, compactness, and partisan fairness.



Sorry, Congress is not the state's legislature, so that bounces both state courts and Congress and federal courts. It is a very exclusive club.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Independent_state_legislature_theory

https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/independent-state-legislature-theory-explained

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/stake-supreme-court-battle-controversial-legal-theory-controls/story?id=88861468


This is why ISL is just awful. If basically gives absolute power to state legislatures and makes it difficult for courts to address problems or overreach. It also increases the power of SCOTUS.
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« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2022, 01:36:57 PM »

Who knew? Yes, the public policy implications are just awful. That is why I disagree with the LDS that the Constitution was divinely inspired. I think Satan had a substantial role myself.
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« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2022, 08:50:29 AM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.
Quote
Sec. 3. Census enumeration apportionment; congressional and legislative district boundaries; senate districts.At its first session after each enumeration of the inhabitants of this state made by the authority of the United States, the legislature shall have the power to prescribe the bounds of congressional and legislative districts.

This basically says the legislature have the power to redistrict after the census, but did not say it can only do it then. Just like the SC ruling that states can redistrict whenever they want but has to do it once every ten years.
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« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2022, 08:53:43 AM »

List I know do:

Georgia
North Carolina
Ohio (sorta, the current map only lasts 4 years but also a full commission via ballot initiatives could also redraw
Texas, but basically everyone in state government needs to sign off on it. If Rs feel their majorities are at risk they could redraw

The reason I ask is because there’s a good chance certain states partisan control will flip and also that if a gerrymander starts to backfire, the majority can just redraw as needed.
Same with PA. In the court order this year, it is quite clear that the map is applicable till the legislature passes a statue that redraws the lines.
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« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2022, 11:23:34 AM »
« Edited: September 23, 2022, 11:58:51 AM by Nyvin »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.
Quote
Sec. 3. Census enumeration apportionment; congressional and legislative district boundaries; senate districts.At its first session after each enumeration of the inhabitants of this state made by the authority of the United States, the legislature shall have the power to prescribe the bounds of congressional and legislative districts.

This basically says the legislature have the power to redistrict after the census, but did not say it can only do it then. Just like the SC ruling that states can redistrict whenever they want but has to do it once every ten years.

That section could be interpreted a lot differently than what you're posting, it's saying that after the census the legislature will be "granted" the power to draw the maps, and once they do the power is gone until the next census.  It doesn't imply anywhere that they have that power all the time whenever they want.

If it was "anytime they want" like you're saying, it would be worded much differently,  not in a "shall have" way rather in a way that says "the legislature will have" first and then state that it's mandated after the census after.

Also if it was meant to give the power anytime they want, what's the point of the comma after United States?  Why not just state "The legislature shall have the power to prescribe the bounds of congressional and legislative districts." as a full and complete sentence?   Why affix the earlier part if there is no restrictions?
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2022, 11:50:11 AM »

In Pennsylvania redoing the legislative lines without court order is prohibited but surprisingly there's nothing similar for the congressional lines.

Same thing goes for New Hampshire actually.

I guess this is a normal thing actually according to redistricting.lls.edu;  Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin all have the same policy - State Legislative mid-decade redistricting isn't allowed (without court order), Congressional mid-decade redistricting is allowed.

It would seem Minnesota does actually ban both the redrawing of Legislative and Congressional lines mid-decade, but it seems this isn't all that clear and probably has never been attempted-

Quote
Minnesota ties the drawing of congressional and state legislative lines to the Census, and might therefore be construed to prohibit redrawing lines mid-decade. [Minn. Const. art. IV, § 3]
https://redistricting.lls.edu/state/minnesota/?cycle=2020&level=Congress&startdate=2022-02-15

Those are probably all the non-commission states besides the ones listed in the OP that could flip this decade to a new trifecta.

Honestly the thing I worry about more is a party redrawing as soon as a map begins to backfire. Like an ever evolving gerrymander

At least right now gerrymandering is somewhat of a risk; your map could backfire badly,  it if mid-decade redraws become normalized to just keep fine-tuning a map as needed that’d be quite sick. If Dems were smart they should pass a ban on mid-decade map redraws with the exception of courts mandating it.

1. What states do the Dems control that they might lose the entire trifecta to the Pubs that would make that ban wise?

2. What would prevent a new Pub trifecta from repealing the ban?

3. It seems to me to make it work one would need the ban in the state constitution, and even then in the next few months SCOTUS for CD's might well remove state supreme courts from the picture.

4. In the end it seems resistance is futile, given that the toxic animus between the parties has reached the point that the gloves are completely off, and anything goes to extract every possible partisan advantage, no matter how repulsive and unfair.


1. PA would likely be the most notable. Tbh a GOP gerry of WI wouldn’t change much.

2. In PA the State Supreme Court leans left and is likely to for the first half of the decade

3. If SCOTUS actually goes full ISL, I would argue that would be more hackish of a decision than overturning Roe or other event controversial decisions because by any metric it allows unlimited power grabbing and SCOTUS knows that. However unless they make some weird carveout ISL would likely favor Dems rn cause they’d get to redraw states like CA and WA and I don’t think they’d be shy about it

4. Yeah this is why we NEED a federal gerrymandering ban ASAP. I wish Democrats would try to pass it in a less ambitious package and possibly just by itself, but ofc they won’t. However, the real villains here are the gop who will not support a gerrymandering ban under any circumstance (even if it helped them given what they’re doing with ISL)

If SCOTUS embraces ISLT (and I think the odds of that are considerably more than negligible), then a federal statute banning gerrymandering for CD's would be unconstitutional, and it might be unconstitutional on other grounds as to a ban of gerrymandering for state legislatures.

To add to the mess nobody can agree within very wide parameters as to what is a fair map,  and the metrics it entails, and academics have come up with flawed metrics that tend to screw the Pubs at the margins given current voting patterns, which the Pubs given their lack of intellectual fire power these days, have not fully understood, although they sense something is rotten in Denmark the way special master academics do their jobs.

So there is no easy way out of the box on this, as is the case on so many other issues, Putin, global warming, globalization, class and cultural tensions, you name it. And we have a political class ever less qualified to deal with much of this, given their respective bases. That is my point of view anyway. On my way out, I have become a glass is half empty downer sort of guy as to the prospects of the public square. It's sad, I know.

The ultimate way out of the box as to this issue is to go to a proportional system ala Germany (you have districts, but the division of the spoils is then equalized with proportionality based on overall percentages of the votes, a system I very much like actually). All we need is a Constitutional amendment to get there. Piece of cake, not, that as well, obviously.


Would it though? I really doubt SCOTUS would just upfront say nothing having to do with elections can ever be governed at the federal level, and even if they did, Dems would likely have the votes to do "court reform" anyways. It's congress's authority to pass laws as they see fit, and while I'm not a scholar I'm not sure what part of the constitution an anti-gerrymandering bill would violate (rmbr though anti gerrymandering legislation can be written in many ways by forcing every state to establish a commission, creating a federal commission, or just putting out basic metrics maps must follow in terms of county splitting, compactness, and partisan fairness.



Sorry, Congress is not the state's legislature, so that bounces both state courts and Congress and federal courts. It is a very exclusive club.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Independent_state_legislature_theory

https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/independent-state-legislature-theory-explained

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/stake-supreme-court-battle-controversial-legal-theory-controls/story?id=88861468


This is why ISL is just awful. If basically gives absolute power to state legislatures and makes it difficult for courts to address problems or overreach. It also increases the power of SCOTUS.

I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 
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« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2022, 12:18:45 PM »

[quote author=Skill and Chance link=topic=522472.msg8778412#msg8778412
I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 
[/quote]

How could SC tell state courts how to interpret what "free elections" mean in their constitution?  Do you think SC can tell state courts that state constitutions and statues should be interpreted as the original public meaning or strict textual meaning?
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2022, 01:05:19 PM »
« Edited: September 23, 2022, 02:00:56 PM by Skill and Chance »

[quote author=Skill and Chance link=topic=522472.msg8778412#msg8778412
I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 

How could SC tell state courts how to interpret what "free elections" mean in their constitution?  Do you think SC can tell state courts that state constitutions and statues should be interpreted as the original public meaning or strict textual meaning?

[/quote]

They could use ISL to say that the default will be it's up to the legislature (subject to federal law and review by federal courts and most likely to the governor's veto and a referendum if the state allows it) unless there is something specifically written in the state constitution or a state law that authorizes someone else to intervene.  The idea would be that the legislature consented to it.
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« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2022, 04:36:04 PM »

[quote author=Skill and Chance link=topic=522472.msg8778412#msg8778412
I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 

How could SC tell state courts how to interpret what "free elections" mean in their constitution?  Do you think SC can tell state courts that state constitutions and statues should be interpreted as the original public meaning or strict textual meaning?


They could use ISL to say that the default will be it's up to the legislature (subject to federal law and review by federal courts and most likely to the governor's veto and a referendum if the state allows it) unless there is something specifically written in the state constitution or a state law that authorizes someone else to intervene.  The idea would be that the legislature consented to it.
[/quote]

I guess they might say that if the state legislature approved the measure to appear on ballot, or they just pass a law to create a redistricting commission, it would be fine. This means commissions in MT, IA, NY, NJ, VA, WA, CO will stay, while CA, AZ, MI will not.

But when it comes to state constitution, it becomes tricky. If a ballot measure without legislative approval dictates that redistricting should be proportional for partisan fairness, what will happen?
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2022, 07:14:47 PM »
« Edited: September 23, 2022, 07:21:38 PM by Skill and Chance »

[quote author=Skill and Chance link=topic=522472.msg8778412#msg8778412
I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 

How could SC tell state courts how to interpret what "free elections" mean in their constitution?  Do you think SC can tell state courts that state constitutions and statues should be interpreted as the original public meaning or strict textual meaning?


They could use ISL to say that the default will be it's up to the legislature (subject to federal law and review by federal courts and most likely to the governor's veto and a referendum if the state allows it) unless there is something specifically written in the state constitution or a state law that authorizes someone else to intervene.  The idea would be that the legislature consented to it.

I guess they might say that if the state legislature approved the measure to appear on ballot, or they just pass a law to create a redistricting commission, it would be fine. This means commissions in MT, IA, NY, NJ, VA, WA, CO will stay, while CA, AZ, MI will not.

But when it comes to state constitution, it becomes tricky. If a ballot measure without legislative approval dictates that redistricting should be proportional for partisan fairness, what will happen?
[/quote]

The argument would likely be that the legislature "consented" when it put forth a constitutional amendment to create the initiative/referendum process. 

In the case of a state that had the initiative/referendum in the original state constitution from day 1 (this is the case for several late-arriving Western states), this is dicier, but the argument could be that Congress "consented" to it when it reviewed the proposed state constitution and admitted the state.  Congress did have a history of reviewing and rejecting proposed state constitutional provisions it disapproved of, such as clauses banning or protecting slavery.  They also required the adoption of a polygamy ban in the Utah constitution as a condition of admission.

The history here is heavily in favor of the initiative being able to modify federal election rules.  Arizona was admitted with an initiative process in its constitution from day 1, and the very first initiative was women's suffrage. 
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« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2022, 10:00:58 PM »

[quote author=Skill and Chance link=topic=522472.msg8778412#msg8778412
I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 

How could SC tell state courts how to interpret what "free elections" mean in their constitution?  Do you think SC can tell state courts that state constitutions and statues should be interpreted as the original public meaning or strict textual meaning?


They could use ISL to say that the default will be it's up to the legislature (subject to federal law and review by federal courts and most likely to the governor's veto and a referendum if the state allows it) unless there is something specifically written in the state constitution or a state law that authorizes someone else to intervene.  The idea would be that the legislature consented to it.

I guess they might say that if the state legislature approved the measure to appear on ballot, or they just pass a law to create a redistricting commission, it would be fine. This means commissions in MT, IA, NY, NJ, VA, WA, CO will stay, while CA, AZ, MI will not.

But when it comes to state constitution, it becomes tricky. If a ballot measure without legislative approval dictates that redistricting should be proportional for partisan fairness, what will happen?

The argument would likely be that the legislature "consented" when it put forth a constitutional amendment to create the initiative/referendum process. 

In the case of a state that had the initiative/referendum in the original state constitution from day 1 (this is the case for several late-arriving Western states), this is dicier, but the argument could be that Congress "consented" to it when it reviewed the proposed state constitution and admitted the state.  Congress did have a history of reviewing and rejecting proposed state constitutional provisions it disapproved of, such as clauses banning or protecting slavery.  They also required the adoption of a polygamy ban in the Utah constitution as a condition of admission.

The history here is heavily in favor of the initiative being able to modify federal election rules.  Arizona was admitted with an initiative process in its constitution from day 1, and the very first initiative was women's suffrage. 
[/quote]
But congressional approval doesn't means state legislature approval. Based on your theory, even the process that state courts striking down gerrymander can be understood as legislature consent or congressional approval.
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Skill and Chance
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« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2022, 12:31:40 PM »
« Edited: September 24, 2022, 12:50:27 PM by Skill and Chance »

[quote author=Skill and Chance link=topic=522472.msg8778412#msg8778412
I think Congress can still override even under the strictest form of ISL where governors can't veto and voter initiatives pertaining to federal elections are invalid?  For example, Congress has set the date on which federal elections will be held.  I don't think a state could just unilaterally move it to the summer or something. 

In practice, the more likely outcome is a limited ISL where state courts can't intervene based on vague, general language, but can intervene if the issue is spelled out in the state constitution.  This would preserve commissions and voter initiatives and gubernatorial vetoes, but it would block state courts from using a state constitutional guarantee of free elections or free expression or equal protection to strike down a map. 

That would also conveniently preserve the court map in NY and the commissions on the West Coast while giving free reign back to the legislatures in NC and PA (if Mastriano wins).  I think the MD decision was also based on general language, so presumably that would also go back to the legislature, but in practice, the MD map is small potatoes. 

How could SC tell state courts how to interpret what "free elections" mean in their constitution?  Do you think SC can tell state courts that state constitutions and statues should be interpreted as the original public meaning or strict textual meaning?


They could use ISL to say that the default will be it's up to the legislature (subject to federal law and review by federal courts and most likely to the governor's veto and a referendum if the state allows it) unless there is something specifically written in the state constitution or a state law that authorizes someone else to intervene.  The idea would be that the legislature consented to it.

I guess they might say that if the state legislature approved the measure to appear on ballot, or they just pass a law to create a redistricting commission, it would be fine. This means commissions in MT, IA, NY, NJ, VA, WA, CO will stay, while CA, AZ, MI will not.

But when it comes to state constitution, it becomes tricky. If a ballot measure without legislative approval dictates that redistricting should be proportional for partisan fairness, what will happen?

The argument would likely be that the legislature "consented" when it put forth a constitutional amendment to create the initiative/referendum process. 

In the case of a state that had the initiative/referendum in the original state constitution from day 1 (this is the case for several late-arriving Western states), this is dicier, but the argument could be that Congress "consented" to it when it reviewed the proposed state constitution and admitted the state.  Congress did have a history of reviewing and rejecting proposed state constitutional provisions it disapproved of, such as clauses banning or protecting slavery.  They also required the adoption of a polygamy ban in the Utah constitution as a condition of admission.

The history here is heavily in favor of the initiative being able to modify federal election rules.  Arizona was admitted with an initiative process in its constitution from day 1, and the very first initiative was women's suffrage. 
But congressional approval doesn't means state legislature approval. Based on your theory, even the process that state courts striking down gerrymander can be understood as legislature consent or congressional approval.
[/quote]

The Elections Clause appears to explicitly allow Congress to override the state legislatures:

"The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators."

One could argue that they did this when admitting a state with certain language in its constitution.
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