A long list of prominent Republicans is urging the Supreme Court to find that extreme partisan gerrymandering is unconstitutional, saying the practice of drawing electoral lines to benefit one party or another is detrimental to democracy. It puts those Republicans on opposing sides from groups such as the Republican National Committee and the party’s congressional campaign committee, which are supporting Wisconsin’s GOP-led legislature in a major high court case to be heard next month. A lower court found lawmakers drew maps that so favored Republican candidates that they violated the constitutional right of equal protection.
Now, Republicans such as former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and the party’s former presidential nominee Robert Dole have signed onto friend-of-the-court briefs that say the Supreme Court should find — for the first time — that a redistricting plan is so politically biased it must be thrown out.
“Partisan gerrymanders frustrate majority rule by entrenching political parties in ways they do not earn on the merits,” says the brief signed by Schwarzenegger and other former elected Republican officials. “They turn republican government upside down, with politicians choosing their voters instead of voters electing their politicians.”