Drawing Lines: The Limits to a State's Redistricting Powers

For the past 50 years, the Supreme Court has repeatedly struggled with whether and how to place limits on states' redrawing of their legislative and congressional districts, establishing the "one-person-one-vote" standard and limiting racial gerrymandering, but declining to set standards for partisan gerrymandering. This term, the Court heard two of the most recent disputes regarding redistricting, including a racial gerrymandering claim in Alabama Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama, and a challenge to a ballot initiative that delegated the redistricting process to an independent commission in Arizona State Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. In an era of extreme partisan gerrymandering and political polarization, are there new legal strategies and political initiatives to make legislatures and congressional districts more representative and accountable? How will those strategies and initiatives fare under existing redistricting jurisprudence? 
  • Hon. Lynn Adelman, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • Anita Earls, Executive Director, Southern Coalition for Social Justice
  • George W. Hicks, Jr., Partner, Bancroft PLLC
  • State Senator Jamie Raskin, Professor of Law, Director of the Law and Government Program, American University Washington College of Law; Majority Whip, Maryland State Senate; Senior Fellow, People for the American Way
  • Franita Tolson, Betty T. Ferguson Professor of Voting Rights, Florida State University College of Law