GOP congressmen challenge new Pennsylvania district map
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's highest court overstepped its authority in drawing new congressional district lines and did not give state lawmakers enough time to produce a map of their own, eight Republican congressmen said in a lawsuit filed today.
The complaint in Harrisburg federal court argued against the legality of the map put in place Monday by the state Supreme Court, and said a 2011 Republican-crafted map should remain in use this year.
The plaintiffs are suing top elections official under Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, asking for an injunction to prevent the Department of State from implementing the new plan.
"Far from being free of politics, it appears every choice in the court drawn plan was to pack Republicans into as few districts as possible, while advantaging Democrats," the plaintiffs alleged.
A separate legal challenge to the new map by two senior Republican legislative leaders is currently awaiting action by the U.S. Supreme Court.
A spokesman for Wolf said he and the elections agency "are complying with the court's order to implement the remedial map and assuring the commonwealth is prepared for the primary election."
The 2011 map is widely considered among the nation's most gerrymandered, a mélange of jagged lines and odd shapes that include one likened to the cartoon character Goofy kicking Donald Duck. The 2011 map, in some places, narrows to the width of a single property.