A three-judge federal court panel will begin hearing oral arguments next week in the McConchie v. Illinois State Board of Elections case, which argues that Illinois Democrats’ legislative redistricting maps violate the U.S. Constitution and the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965.
The plaintiffs, Senate Republican Leader Dan McConchie and House Republican Leader Jim Durkin along with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), say that the maps signed by Gov. Pritzker in September underrepresent minority groups. Despite the growth in the Latino population in Illinois, the September maps actually reduce the number of districts in which Latinos make up a majority of the voting age population.
Last month, Illinois Republicans were asked to file their proposed remedy with the court. Their remedial maps fix the flaws in the Democrats’ politician-drawn maps by creating more districts with minority voting-age populations above 50 percent that will better provide voters the ability to elect candidates of their choice.
The plaintiffs’ introduced map, created by the Republicans’ legal redistricting team – not incumbent politicians – included:
- 11 Latino Citizen Voting Age Population (CVAP) House districts compared to only 4 Latino CVAP House Districts introduced in the Democrats’ second map;
- 5 Latino CVAP Senate Districts compared to only 2 Latino CVAP Senate Districts introduced in the Democrats’ second map; and
- 1 additional CVAP African American House District in the Metro East.
Next week’s hearing comes after the three-judge panel already ruled the initial map drawn by Democrats and signed by Gov. Pritzker unconstitutional as it violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Oral arguments in the McConchie v. Illinois State Board of Elections, where Democrats will have to defend their second set of politically-drawn maps, are set to begin on Dec. 7, 2021.