The Wisconsin Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments next week in a redistricting case that Democrats hope will result in new, more favorable state legislative maps for elections in 2024 that will help them chip away at the large Republican majority.
Republicans in the state have built large majorities in the Legislature under maps they drew over a decade ago.
The lawsuit brought by 19 Democratic voters is being heard by the court Tuesday. Lawyers argue that the maps passed in 2022, which vary little from those drawn in 2011, are unconstitutionally “unsalvageable” and must be struck down and redrawn.
Wisconsin's Constitution states that when Assembly voting districts are drawn, they should be "bounded by county, precinct, town or ward lines, to consist of contiguous territory and be in as compact form as practicable." It also states Senate districts should not split Assembly districts and should also be made of "convenient contiguous territory."
With the win in the April election of Justice Janet Protasiewicz, the Wisconsin Supreme Court is currently arrayed as 4-3 in favor of Democrats. Leading Republicans in Wisconsin had threatened to impeach her before the case could come before the court.
Democrats are hoping the new maps can be in effect before 2024, but it seems unlikely given that the case, no matter how it is decided, will surely be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Wisconsin is considered a ‘battleground’ state in Presidential elections because four of the past six presidential elections have been decided by fewer than 23,000 votes.
About the writer: Matthew Woodruff is an Independent Journalist and Author who believes in Freely Accessible, Honest and Open Reporting. Visit at matthewcwoodruff.com