Litigation in the 2010 cycle

(Click here for a summary of which maps were struck/upheld in the 2010 cycle.)
(Click here for a summary of which maps were struck/upheld in the 2000 cycle.)
(Click for individual cases in the 2000, 1990, 1980 cycles.)

Redistricting status map

Suit filed  
All suits resolved  

Note: Under federal law, a three-judge federal trial court hears constitutional challenges to federal or state legislative districts or requests for preclearance, and these decisions are appealed directly to the U.S. Supreme Court. Federal appellate courts therefore tend to get involved only when there is no constitutional challenge or judicial preclearance request, or when only local districts are challenged.

  • Maryland

    Benisek v. Mack, No. 1:13-cv-03233 (D. Md.) & No. 14-1417 (4th Cir.): a challenge in federal court to the congressional map based on the "essentially non-contiguous structure and discordant composition" of the districts, which the court construed as a partisan gerrymandering claim.
         - Trial court
              - Complaint (Nov. 5, 2013) and amended complaint (Nov. 20).
              - Motion to dismiss (Dec. 17), opposition (Dec. 31), reply (Jan. 17, 2014).
              - Opinion granting motion to dismiss (Apr. 8, 2014).
         - Court of appeals
              - Brief by plaintiff (May 27), defendants (June 19), reply (July 2).
              - Opinion summarily affirming trial court (Oct. 7).
                   - Petition for rehearing/en banc (Oct. 17).
                   - Order denying petition (Nov. 12). The latest: On April 8, 2014, the court dismissed all claims, without appointing a three-judge court. The court found that plaintiffs had not alleged any cognizable constitutional claim based on the composition of the challenged districts or an alleged disadvantage to affiliated partisan voters. The decision was affirmed on appeal.

    Parrott v. McDonough, No. 02C12172298 (Md. Circuit Ct., Anne Arundel County), No. 01445 & Petition Docket No. 382 (Md. Ct. of Special Appeals): a challenge in state court to the language of the ballot referendum set for November 2012, challenging the state's congressional districts.
         - Trial court
              - Complaint (Aug. 29, 2012).
              - Plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment (Sept. 4), opposition (Sept. 5).
              - Defendants' cross-motion for summary judgment (Sept. 5).
              - Order granting defendants' motion, upholding language (Sept. 6).
         - Court of appeals (Highest state court)
              - Order dismissing writ of certiorari (Sept. 10).
         - Court of special appeals
              - Brief by plaintiffs (Mar. 19, 2013), defendants (July 16), reply (Sept. 13).
              - Opinion affirming trial court (July 23, 2014).
         - Court of appeals II (Highest state court)
              - Petition for certiorari (Aug. 22), amicus Shapiro supporting cert. (Sept. 4).
              - Answer (Sept. 9).
              - Order denying petition (oct. 22).
    The latest: On September 6, 2012, the court rejected the challenge, denying plaintiffs' motion, granting defendants' motion, and approving the referendum language. On July 23, 2014, the intermediate appellate court affirmed; on October 22, 2014, the state's highest court declined to hear the case.

    In the Matter of 2012 Legislative Districting of the State, Misc No. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 9 (Md. Ct. Appeals): challenges in state court to state legislative districts, on multiple grounds.
         - Scheduling order (Mar. 6, 2012).
         - Petition of Bouchat (Apr. 26), Brochin et al., Houser et al., Howard et al. (May 1, 2012).
              - Notice of dismissal of Howard petition (June 19).
              - Petition of LePin (July 11), denied as untimely (Aug. 17).
         - Motions to dismiss/summary judgment re Bouchat, Brochin, Houser, Howard (June 7).
              - Supporting declaration by Cain (June 7).
              - Response by Houser et al. (June 19).
         - Report of the Special Master (Sept. 20).
         - Order rejecting challenges (Nov. 9), opinion (Dec. 10, 2013).
    The latest: Four petitions challenging the state redistricting plan were filed by May 1, 2012; motions to dismiss (and, in the alternative, motions for summary judgment) were filed on June 7. Hearings before a Special Master were scheduled for September 4-10, 2012; the Special Master released a report on September 20, recommending the denial of all petitions. On November 9, the state's highest court (the Court of Appeals) agreed, and rejected all of the challenges.

    Whitley v. Md. State Bd. of Elections, No. 02C12171365 (Md. Circuit Ct., Anne Arundel County) & No. 133 (Md. Ct. Appeals): a challenge in state court to the validity of signatures submitted on a certified petition seeking a referendum on the congressional lines.
         - Trial court
              - Complaint (July 24, 2012).
              - Plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment (Aug. 7), opposition (Aug. 9).
              - Intervenors' cross-motion to dismiss and/or for summary judgment (Aug. 9).
              - Opinion denying plts. motion, granting intervenor-deft. motion (Aug. 10).
         - Court of appeals
              - Brief of plaintiffs (Aug. 14), defendant, intervenor (Aug. 15).
              - Order rejecting challenges, affirming trial court (Aug. 17), final opinion (Oct. 23).
    The latest: On August 10, 2012, the trial court denied plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment and granted the intervenor-defendant's cross-motion, approving the signatures. The decision was affirmed on appeal to the state Court of Appeals (the state's highest court).

    Gorrell v. O'Malley, No. 1:11-CV-02975 (D. Md.) & No. 12-01234 (4th Cir.): a challenge in federal court to the congressional districts, based primarily on alleged partisan gerrymandering and insufficient consideration of communities of interest.
         - Trial court
              - Complaint (Oct. 27, 2011), amended complaint (Nov. 10).
              - Motion for entry of default judgment (Dec. 15), opposition (Dec. 22), reply (Jan. 4).
              - Motion to dismiss (Dec. 22), opposition (Jan. 18, 2012).
              - Opinion granting motion to dismiss (Jan. 19).
         - Court of appeals
              - Brief of plaintiff (Apr. 5), response (Apr. 23), reply (May 9).
              - Opinion dismissing case for lack of standing (July 12).
    The latest: On January 19, 2012, the court granted the Governor's motion to dismiss, rejecting the plaintiff's challenges. On appeal, the court dismissed the appeal for lack of standing on July 12, after the plaintiff moved out of the jurisdiction.

    Fletcher v. Lamone, No. 8:11-CV-03220 (D. Md.) & No. 11-1178 (Sup. Ct.): a challenge in federal court to the congressional districts, based on alleged racial and partisan gerrymandering, unequal population, violations of the Voting Rights Act, and two claims based on adjustments to account for the population in prison -- including a claim based on omission of individuals in prison whose last known addresses are outside of the state.
         - Trial court
              - AG analysis of congressional plan (Oct. 20).
              - Complaint (Nov. 10).
              - Motion to dismiss (Nov. 18), response (Nov. 21).
              - Motion for prelim. inj. and memo (att. A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I)) (Nov. 18).
                   - Opposition and motion to dismiss/summary judgment (Dec. 2), reply (Dec. 13).
                   - Reply (exhs. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17) (Dec. 7).                - Surreply (Dec. 16).
                   - Amicus brief by Howard School of Law Civil Rights Clinic et al. (Dec. 2).
                   - Amicus brief by Olson et al. (Dec. 7).
              - Opinion granting summary judgment to the state (Dec. 23).
         - U.S. Supreme Court
              - Jurisdictional statement (Mar. 20).
              - Motion to affirm (May 25).
              - Summary affirmance (June 25).
    The latest: On December 23, the court denied the defendants' motion to dismiss and the plaintiffs' motions for an injunction, and granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment. The court rejected plaintiffs' claims of partisan and racial gerrymandering and of violations of the Voting Rights Act -- and, in an additional significant portion of the opinion (pp. 8-20), found no constitutional deficiency in Maryland's decision to adjust census data in order to account for the incarcerated population. On June 25, the decision was summarily affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Martin v. Maryland, No. 1:11-cv-00904 (D. Md.): a challenge in federal court to Maryland's congressional apportionment, based on the allegation that article I, section 2, guarantees one member of Congress for each 30,000 citizens.
         - Complaint (Apr. 6, 2011).
         - Motion to dismiss (May 5), opposition (May 13), reply (May 19).
         - Opinion granting motion to dismiss (Oct. 27).
    The latest: On October 27, the court granted the motion to dismiss, rejecting the plaintiff's challenge as a nonjusticiable political question.

    Martin v. Maryland (II), No. 1:11-cv-03443 (D. Md.): a challenge in federal court to the federal statutes establishing 435 members of Congress, based on the allegation that article I, section 2, guarantees one member of Congress for each 30,000 citizens.
         - Complaint (Nov. 29, 2011).
         - Motion to dismiss (Jan. 12), opposition (Feb. 1).
         - Opinion granting motion to dismiss (Feb. 9).
    The latest: On February 9, the court granted the motion to dismiss, for the same reasons as in Martin v. Maryland I, above.

    Olson v. O'Malley, Misc No. 13 (Md. Ct. Appeals): a challenge in state court to the congressional districts, based on federal and state constitutional provisions, including a violation of the state's requirement that districts be compact.
         - Complaint (Nov. 22).
         - Motion to dismiss, Opposition (Jan. 9).
         - Order dismissing case (Jan. 10).
    The latest: The complaint and motion for summary judgment were filed on November 22, 2011. The case was dismissed the week of January 9, 2012.

    Olson v. O'Malley, No. 02C11165635 (Md. Circuit Ct., Anne Arundel County) & No. 1:12-cv-00240 (D. Md.): a challenge in state court to the congressional districts, based on federal and state constitutional provisions, including a violation of the state's requirement that districts be compact.
         - Complaint (Nov. 22).
         - Plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment (Nov. 22) and amended motion (aff.) (Dec. 29).
              - Response (Jan. 24).
         - Notice of removal (Jan. 24).
         - Motion to dismiss (and cross-motion for summary judgment) (Jan. 24).
              - Opposition (Feb. 7).
         - Opinion dismissing case (Mar. 6).
    The latest: The complaint and motion for summary judgment were filed on November 22, 2011. On January 24, the case was removed to federal court, where the case was dismissed on the merits on March 6. The court found that Maryland provisions requiring districts to be compact, among others, applied only to state legislative districts.

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