On March 7, 2022 a Pennsylvania voter filed a petition with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court challenging the Pennsylvania Legislative Reapportionment Commission's adopted legislative plan as violating various provisions of the state constitution. First, he alleged the plan violated the Pennsylvania Constitution's Free and Equal Elections Clause because it contained excessive population deviations which resulted from the Commission's prioritization of partisan advantage over neutral redistricting criteria. Second, he alleged the Commission discriminated against certain voters in deciding to reallocate incarcerated persons to their prior home addresses for legislative redistricting purposes in violation of article I, § 26 of the Pennsylvania Constitution, and that this action further distorted the final plan's population deviations. Third, he claimed the plan excessively paired Republican incumbents based on their political affiliations in subrogation of the state's neutral redistricting criteria, and that it split more political subdivisions than was necessary in violation of article II, § 16. Finally, he asserted the Commission's explicit use of race to draw districts when not clearly required by the Voting Rights Act constituted racial gerrymandering in violation of the Pennsylvania Constitution's Free and Equal Elections Clause, Racial Ethnic Equality Clause, and Equal Protection Clause. He sought a court order declaring the final plan unlawful and remanding the plan back to the Commission with directions to remedy the issues identified.
On March 16, 2022 the Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued an order upholding the adopted legislative plan as constitutional and dismissing all of the petitions challenging it.
Pennsylvania Supreme Court - No. 16 MM 2022
- Petition for Review - 3/7/22
- Amicus Curiae Brief of the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania - 3/7/22
- Petitioner's Brief - 3/7/22
- Notice of Intervention of Joanna E. McClinton, Leader of the Democratic Caucus of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and Member of the Legislative Reapportionment Commission - 3/10/22
- Consolidated Answer of Joanna E. McClinton to Petitions for Review - 3/11/22
- Consolidated Brief of Joanna E. McClinton in Response to Petitions for Review - 3/11/22
- Order Approving Legislative Plan - 3/16/22
- Order Modifying Elections Calendar - 3/16/22