Plaintiffs challenging the 2013 redistricting maps on Tuesday accused the state of improperly delaying the release of thousands of pages of documents from them, including 113 documents that state lawyers refuse to hand over because they say they are privileged. The spat may further delay a conclusion to the weeklong trial, which already was frustrating judges on Tuesday because of repetitive questions during the House maps portion of the trial. Testimony over congressional maps was heard late Tuesday. Many of the documents in question pertain to communications of the chairman of the 2013 redistricting committee, Rep. Drew Darby, R-San Angelo, with other people involved in the redistricting, according to a lawyer for the plaintiffs.
The documents, under rules imposed by the three-judge panel, should have been disclosed years ago in the six-year old lawsuit, along with what’s known as a “privilege log,” but the apparent failure was recently discovered by Mark Gaber, one of the lawyers representing what’s known as the Quesada group of plaintiffs, according to court papers filed by Gaber.
After Gaber pressed for the documents last week, state lawyers over the weekend released more than 7,000 pages, but stopped short of turning over everything. Gaber filed an emergency motion to compel the state to turn over the 113 pages it says are protected by attorney-client privilege.