Effort to redraw Pa. congressional maps inches ahead in Harrisburg
The United States Supreme Court declined an appeal from Republicans to stop Pennsylvania from having to draw new maps for its congressional elections. The state supreme court ruled that the current map is excessively partisan, and that it amounts to a gerrymander intended to disfavor democrats. The state court held that the current maps violate the Pennsylvania constitution. The ruling gave the legislature three weeks to come up with a new plan. If the state fails to meet the deadline the court said it would draft its own map.
HARRISBURG – A meeting between the governor and Republican legislative leaders, and a House committee’s unanimous procedural vote, are the most visible signs of progress in the effort to enact new congressional district maps.
Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf met briefly with House Speaker Mike Turzai and Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati on Tuesday, but no progress was reported.
Elsewhere in the Capitol, the State Government Committee positioned a bill to be ready in case there’s a deal.
Friday is a court-ordered deadline for lawmakers to give Wolf a new plan for his consideration. Wolf will have until Feb. 15 to decide whether he supports it and can recommend it to the court.
If that doesn’t happen, the justices say they’ll take proposals and develop their own plan for this year’s races.
The justices on Jan. 22 ruled the existing plan violated the state constitution and threw it out.
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