Republican lawmakers in Pennsylvania claim Justices with the State Supreme Court have overstepped their boundaries after a decision by the court earlier this week.
The court ruled Pennsylvania’s current congressional boundaries unconstitutionally and intentionally favor republicans.
Now, lawmakers have a little more than two weeks to agree on new district maps or justices with the State Supreme Court Say they’ll take matters in to their own hands and adopt a plan for 2018 elections.
The back and forth started when Democratic voters sued the state legislature last year, claiming Pennsylvania’s congressional districts were unconstitutionally gerrymandered.
“The lawsuit was an attempt to remedy what we consider an unconstitutional situation. We think voters across the state have been deprived of real representation in Congress,” Carol Kuniholm, a member of The League of Women’s voters of Pennsylvania.
Advocates for redrawing Congressional Districts say current maps unfairly benefit republican candidates.
The State Supreme Court Ultimately sided with the Plaintiffs. Now lawmakers have until February 9th to pass and replace current maps and Governor Wolf has until February 15th to submit the plan to the court otherwise the Justices say they’ll adopt a plan. But, that’s not sitting well with some lawmakers.
Representative Daryl Metcalfe says “ they are threatening to take over this responsibility, this duty that belongs to the legislature.”
Representative Metcalfe claims the justices are playing politics with congressional districts, and say the courts decision has thrown the 2018 election in to a state of chaos. “It’s unpredictable as far as timeline and process because we are in uncharted waters. It is an action if that’s been taken by the Pennsylvania state Supreme Court that now other states Court has ever taken before. Hopefully the US Supreme Court will step in and stop this rogue Partisan decision that’s been made by these democratic judges,” Metcalfe added.
Republican lawmakers filed for a stay with the United States Supreme Court, which would postpone any Redistricting until the after the 2018 election cycle.