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Congressman David Price Joins Bipartisan Amicus Brief To Supreme Court Calling For End to Extreme Partisan Gerrymandering

September 7, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.  (Sept. 7, 2017) – This week, Congressman David Price (NC-4)–along with a bipartisan coalition of 34 current and former Members of Congress—submitted an amicus brief to the United States Supreme Court in a pending case before the High Court that could stop the undemocratic, partisan gerrymandering of political districts in the United States.

“For too long, partisan gerrymandering has systematically stifled our democratic process, encouraging lawmakers to narrow their vision and curtailing their ability to reach common ground,” said Congressman David Price. “It is time we put an end to a system where politicians have the ability to cherry pick their voters. My home state of North Carolina has been ground-zero for hyper-partisan gerrymandering, and I am proud to add my voice to this effort.”

The case before the Court, Gill v. Whitford, involves a group of Wisconsin voters who in 2015 challenged the Wisconsin state legislature’s 2011 redistricting map in federal court as an excessively partisan gerrymander barred by the Constitution. A lower court ruling last year found the map violated both the Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause and the plaintiffs’ First Amendment freedom of association. This fall, the Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments on the appeal to the lower court ruling.

“Extreme partisan gerrymandering harms our political system, and harms the functioning of the House in particular,” wrote the Members in the brief. “Extreme partisan gerrymandering is undemocratic, and cannot be reconciled with the Framers’ idea of a House of Representatives that would be directly accountable to the People through competitive and broad-based elections. Partisan gerrymandering makes it more difficult for Members to do the one job voters expect above all: delivering results for their constituents.”

In the brief, the Members also pointed out that the Supreme Court explained in 2015: “[T]he core principle of republican government [is] that voters should choose their representatives, not the other way around.” When legislators’ draw districts that ignore traditional criteria such as representational fairness, natural geography, and cohesive communities of interest, in favor of pure partisan gain, the brief explains, that “core principle” is violated.

To read the full brief, click here.

The full list of signers to the amicus brief: 

Rep. Mark Amodei (R-Nev.)
Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.)
Rep. Rod Blum (R-Iowa)
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.)
Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Penn.)
Fmr. Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.)
Fmr. Rep. Rod Chandler (R-Wash.)
Fmr. Rep. William Clinger (R-Penn.)
Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.)
Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.)
Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.)
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.)
Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Penn.)
Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.)
Rep. Raul M. Grijalva (D. Az.)
Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.)
Fmr. Rep. David Jolly (R-Fla.)
Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.)
Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio)
Rep. Dan Kildee (D-Mich.)
Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.)
Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.)
Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-Cal.)
Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Tex.)
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.)
Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.)
Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine)
Rep. David Price (D-N.C.)
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.)
Rep. Tom Reed (R-N.Y.)
Fmr. Rep. Claudine Schneider (R-R.I.)
Fmr. Rep. Christopher Shays (R-Conn.)
Fmr. Rep. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine)
Rep. Thomas Suozzi (D-N.Y.)
Rep. Scott Tipton (R-Colo.)
Fmr. Rep. Zach Wamp (R-Tenn.)