Five decades after the Supreme Court ruled that legislative districts must be drawn on the basis of “one person, one vote,” the justices have agreed to consider a claim that representation should reflect the number of eligible voters in a district, not the overall population. They should reject such a radical interpretation, which would undermine the principle that legislators must be attentive to the needs of all of the people living in the areas they represent. That includes children and the noncitizens who in many parts of this country — including Southern California — form a significant and productive part of the population.
Many legal experts were surprised last week when the justices agreed to hear the case, which was brought by two Texas voters who argue that the apportionment of the state Senate unconstitutionally denied them equal protection of the laws because it was based strictly on overall population. Because of the high numbers of nonvoters in some districts, the challengers contended, some voters have a greater ability to influence Senate elections than others. In their appeal, the challengers complained that the Senate votes of some Texans are “approximately one and one-half times” the value of their votes.
Full Article: ‘One person, one vote’ should stay that way – LA Times.