Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


“We’re not back at square one.” Federal court refuses to relitigate Section Two violation

Republicans in the state Legislature reportedly crafted the new map with the intent of once again provoking a U.S. Supreme Court challenge.


The Alabama Legislature drafted and passed a new Congressional district map in a special session last month that was intended by the court to remedy the original map’s violation of Section Two of the Voting Rights Act.

APR reported last week that state Republicans instead passed a map hoping to sway U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh into accepting the new plan.

But the three-judge federal panel emphasized in a status conference Monday that “we are not at square one in these cases.”

“Indeed, it would be unprecedented for this Court to relitigate the likely Section Two violation during these remedial proceedings, and the Court will not do so,” the judges wrote in their order.

The plaintiffs will still bear the burden of proving that the state’s remedial map fails to rectify the Section Two violation. The map passed by the Legislature would reduce the state’s existing majority-minority district from a Black voting age percentage of 55 percent to just over 50 percent, while creating a second “opportunity district” in District 2 with just a 40 percent BVAP. Critics have said that falls far short of the bar set previously by the court that the remedy would either be a second majority-minority district “or something quite close to it.”

But sources privy to the proceedings say that was never the intent of the Republican supermajority anyway, as the Alabama Senate Republicans worked with a D.C. attorney to craft a new map they hope can be brought back to the U.S. Supreme Court and, this time, flip the cards and gain approval.

The remedial hearing will be held on August 14, and the judges have removed the Singleton plaintiffs from that hearing, ruling that they aren’t a party to that portion of the case. However, a second hearing will be held directly following the remedial hearing to consider injunctive relief sought by the Singleton plaintiffs to enjoin Secretary of State Wes Allen from administering the 2024 elections using the new map drafted by the Legislature.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Jacob Holmes is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can reach him at [email protected]

More from APR


APR spoke with former Sen. Doug Jones to get his thoughts on the 60th anniversary of the Birmingham tragedy.


Alabama asked the Supreme Court to order a stay so that the maps can be used in the upcoming election season.


The VRA plan was rejected by the Republican House majority in favor of a plan by Speaker Pro Tem Chris Pringle, R-Mobile.


The judges criticized the state for failing to follow the Supreme Court order to create a second opportunity district for Black voters.