Yesterday, counsel for The Bull Elephant (our own Paul Prados) filed a brief in support of our redistricting plan with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. This relates to the 3rd Congressional District in Virginia which is presently represented by Democrat Representative Bobby Scott.
The TBE Plan minimizes race as a consideration and in fact is superior to other plans in which race is a predominant factor. The entire purpose of the decision of the 4th Circuit was to eliminate to the greatest extent possible race as a consideration in the drawing of the boundaries. We think our plan best accomplishes this goal.
Prados had the following statement:
The Third Congressional District lines were deemed unconstitutional under the concept of equal protection due to the fact that a three Judge panel found that race was the predominant factor in promulgating the 2012 plan. Instead of correcting the problem as directed by the Court, many of the plans exalted race as the paramount concern. This is seen by the statements of various parties that they are trying to increase the probability of minority representation within the Virginia delegation.
As indicated in TBE’s Brief, ‘The options here are to either make race a minor factor, or eliminate it altogether as a factor.’ For this reason alone many of the plans should be disqualified.
TBE took a comprehensive approach, considering the Court’s ruling, contiguity, compactness, equalization, preservation of the preference of the General Assembly as seen in the 2012 Plan, and preservation of political subdivisions. In looking at the other submissions, one or more representatives will need to charter a boat or cross through other districts to travel their entire district. The TBE Plan excels at contiguity, the easiest and most objective factor after equalization. “Ultimately, the TBE Plans best balance the factors without completely ignoring the 2012 Plan, which embodies the will of the people’s representatives,” Prados says
The Special Master, Professor Bernard Grofman has a hard job ahead of him, and TBE appreciates the deliberate and careful nature the Court has shown during this litigation. We are proud of the work we have done, and are pleased that the litigants and the public have taken such an interest in the process.
TBE’s brief and the exhibit to that brief are embedded below.