There’s the old saying about March coming in like a lion and leaving like a lamb, and that certainly seems to have played out in the redistricting litigation. March began with a furious flurry the release of interim maps and changes to the election schedule. But with campaigning having begun in earnest and March having ended without a preclearance decision, so too, in all likelihood, did the prospect of further revisions to the interim maps and a further delay of the Texas primary to June 26, with an August 28 runoff.
Now, the preclearance decision when it comes down still might yet require changes to the interim maps before they become the permanent remedial maps. It’s just that those changes likely will have to wait until 2014 to take effect. The reason is simple – revising the interim maps at this juncture would push the runoff into September and run into deadlines for the general election. Military and overseas ballots for the November general election need to be mailed by September 22 but ballots take 2-3 weeks to print after the primary runoff.