CASE SUMMARY

On October 18, 2021, a coalition of Latino civil and voting rights organizations and Latino Texans filed a federal lawsuit against Texas's Governor and Deputy Secretary of State challenging the state's enacted state House, state Senate, State Board of Education, and congressional redistricting plans as violating the U.S. Constitution and the federal Voting Rights Act. Specifically, plaintiffs allege that all four plans are intentionally racially discriminatory towards the plaintiffs as Latino voters in violation of the 14th Amendment's Equal Protection Clause and that all four plans have both the intent and effect of diluting Latino voting strength in violation of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. Additionally, plaintiffs assert that Texas's prior redistricting plans, where were enacted following the 2010 Census, have since become unconstitutionally malapportioned in violation of the one person, one vote constitutional principle such that they can no longer be used in future elections, and that the newly enacted state House plan, with an overall deviation of 9.98%, also violates the 14th Amendment's one person, one vote principle because the large deviation resulted from the state's efforts to minimize the number of Latino-majority and Latino influence districts. The plaintiffs are seeking a judicial declaration that all four of the newly enacted redistricting plans are unlawful and unconstitutional, a declaration that the previous decade's redistricting plans are unconstitutionally malapportioned, an injunction barring the defendants from implementing or utilizing the plans in future elections, for the court to establish a reasonable deadline by which the state must adopt new, valid redistricting plans, and if the state fails to do so, for the court to order new redistricting plans on its own.

On November 19, 2021, the district court consolidated this case with several other pending challenges to Texas redistricting plans: Wilson v. Texas; Voto Latino v. Scott; Mexican Am. Legislative Caucus v. Texas; Brooks v. Abbott; Fair Maps Texas Action Comm. v. Abbott; & Texas State Conf. of the NAACP v. Abbott. On December 10, 2021, another case was consolidated with this lawsuit, United States v. Texas, and on December 15, 2021, Fischer v. Scott was consolidated as well. On January 13, 2022, another congressional plan challenge was consolidated, Escobar v. Abbott.

On February 8, 2022, the district court dismissed the Wilson plaintiff's complaint on the grounds it failed to allege an injury-in-fact traceable to the defendants. On May 19, several state legislator defendants filed an interlocutory appeal and request for a stay with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit as to a district court order requiring them to appear for depositions. The Fifth Circuit denied the stay on May 20, and the legislators filed an emergency application for a stay with the U.S. Supreme Court the following day. The U.S. Supreme Court denied the stay application on May 31.

On May 23, 2022, the court issued an opinion and order dismissing many of the Voto Latino, Mexican American Legislative Caucus, Texas State Conference of the NAACP, Fair Maps Texas Action Committee, and United States' claims on the grounds the plaintiffs either lacked standing to pursue them or failed to state a claim. On June 23, 2022, the court dismissed the Escobar plaintiffs' claims and closed that case. On July 25, the court granted the defendants' motion to dismiss the Fischer plaintiff's Section 2 claim for failure to state a claim.

CASE LIBRARY

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, El Paso Division - No. 3:21-cv-259 [consolidated with 1:21-cv-943, 1:21-cv-965, 1:21-cv-988, 1:21-cv-991, 1:21-cv-1006, 1:21-cv-1038, 3:21-cv-299, 3:21-cv-306, 3:22-cv-22, 3:22-mc-219 & 3:22-mc-230]

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit - No. 22-50407 [League of United Latin Am. Citizens v. Guillen]

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit - No. 22-50662 [LULAC v. Patrick]

U.S. Supreme Court - No. 21A756 [Guillen v. League of United Latin Am. Citizens]