Alabama Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama; Alabama Democratic Conference v. Alabama

Summarized by:

  • Court: U.S. Supreme Court Certiorari Granted
  • Area(s) of Law: Constitutional Law
  • Date Filed: June 2, 2014
  • Case #: 13-895; 13-1138
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Court Below: 989 F. Supp. 2d 1227 (M.D. Ala. 2013)
  • Full Text Opinion

1. Whether a state enacted redistricting plan violates one person, one vote if the plan results in large deviations for local legislative appointments that have governing power over counties. 2. Whether the legislative redistricting plans unconstitutionally classify African American voters by race because the plans intentionally draw district lines to preserve “the supermajority percentages produced when 2010 census data are applied to the 2001 majority-black districts.”

After a long history of being unable to apportion legislative districts without judicial oversight, the Alabama Legislature apportioned itself in 2000 and 2010 and both times obtained administrative preclearance as required by the Voting Rights Act. In 2010 republicans won a supermajority in both houses of the Alabama Legislature and redrew the district lines which republicans felt gave democrats an unfair advantage. Both Plaintiff groups filed suit, which was consolidated, arguing that the redistricting violated the one person, one vote under the equal protection clause of the fourteenth amendment, unconstitutionally diluted the votes of African Americans, and that the new districts created racial and political gerrymandering.

The district court denied Plaintiff’s motions for summary judgment and an injunctive relief. Plaintiffs made a second motion for partial summary judgment with the court again denied. The United States Supreme Court denied the Plaintiff’s appeal for want of jurisdiction after the district court granted partial summary judgment for Alabama, dismissed Plaintiff’s facial challenge under the Equal Protection Clause, and denied Plaintiff’s motion requesting an order to stop the state from implementing the new districts. After the denial of the appeal the district court dismissed the claims of Plaintiff. Plaintiff again appealed to the Supreme Court of the United States which noted probable jurisdiction and scheduled oral arguments.

Advanced Search