CASE SUMMARY

On June 28, 2021, a Virginia voter filed a federal lawsuit against Virginia's Governor, the Virginia Department of Elections, the State Board of Elections, and various state election officials, challenging the state's plan to move forward with the 2021 legislative elections under the legislative redistricting plan enacted during the 2010 cycle. The plaintiff alleges that due to population shifts over the last decade, Virginia's current legislative districts have now become unconstitutionally malapportioned, and due to the delayed release of 2020 census data, new properly apportioned plans will not be able to be drawn in time for the 2021 legislative elections. The plaintiff cites a federal court decision from Virginia in 1981 which, under similar circumstances wherein a new redistricting plan was not able to be enacted prior to the 1981 legislative elections, held that if General Assembly members were to be elected under a then-unconstitutionally malapportioned districting plan, those elected would serve only one-year terms and a new election would have to be held in 1982 under a properly apportioned districting plan. On that basis, the plaintiff is requesting that the court declare Virginia's legislative redistricting plan unconstitutional and order that the delegates elected in 2021 shall serve only one-year terms, with a new General Assembly election to be held in 2022 concurrent with the general election for the U.S. House of Representatives.

CASE LIBRARY

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Richmond Division - No. 3:21-cv-420