Texas lawmakers have once again found themselves in the crosshairs of the federal government this week, and it’s reigniting a longstanding argument about states’ rights.
The latest affront to the sovereignty of the Lone Star State comes after local leaders approved a broad redistricting map for upcoming elections.
The Justice Department filed a lawsuit Monday challenging legislative maps adopted by Texas Republicans in recent weeks that it says fail to recognize growth in the Latino population and discriminate against Black voters.Advertisement - story continues below
The lawsuit alleges that the redistricting plan drawn by Texas lawmakers violates the Voting Rights Act.
The Justice Department did not mince their words.
“The complaint we filed today alleges that Texas has violated Section Two by creating redistricting plans that deny or bridge the rights of Latino and Black voters to vote on account of their race, color or membership in a language-minority group,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a news conference.
The lawsuit targets both the US congressional map drawn for the next decade of elections and the plan for the state House.Advertisement - story continues below
“The Legislature refused to recognize the State’s growing minority electorate,” the lawsuit states. “Although the Texas Congressional delegation expanded from 36 to 38 seats, Texas designed the two new seats to have Anglo voting majorities.”
There will undoubtedly be plenty of Republican lawmakers, in Texas and beyond, who will soon be taking aim at this grand overreach.