Supreme Court Takes on Major Election-Related Case

Supreme Court To Take On Major Redistricting Case

( – The Supreme Court (SCOTUS) is hearing arguments on a number of hot-button cases this term. One such lawsuit that it agreed to hear comes out of North Carolina. Moore v. Harper centers on gerrymandering and the role of state courts and constitutions in the creation of congressional maps. The outcome could have a significant impact not just on North Carolina but all states moving forward.

On Wednesday, December 7, the justices heard oral arguments in Moore v. Harper, where the independent state legislature theory sits front and center. This theory banks on the fact that the Elections Clause in the US Constitution bestows the right to set rules for federal elections on state legislatures. Further, it contends state courts have no legal grounds to ensure these rules follow the state constitution.

This case made its way to the SCOTUS following the addition of North Carolina’s 14th district. The GOP legislature drew up new congressional maps, which the State Supreme Court — currently a Democrat majority — then deemed unconstitutional, saying it was akin to gerrymandering, giving Republicans an unfair advantage.

The SCOTUS justices asked both sides to present their cases. The panel raised numerous questions such as how the state’s constitution fails to play a role when the state legislature gets its power from that document.

The justices are expected to rule on the case by the end of June.

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