Well, here is a little bit of good news (hat tip: Doug)! According to the Washington Post late yesterday, a US District court judge has ruled that the case against the Democrats’ redistricting map for Maryland may go forward.
From the WaPo:
A group of African Americans seeking to overturn Maryland’s congressional map on grounds that Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and the state legislature racially gerrymandered lines to help elect Democrats won an initial victory in court Monday.
U.S. District Judge Roger W. Titus rebuffed an argument to dismiss the case from Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler (D) and sided with the group that a three-judge panel should be seated to hear the case.
Titus said he would immediately notify the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. The chief judge could still decide not to grant a three-judge panel, but the development suggested the state may have to fully justify its map before the court.
O’Malley and the state’s Democratic controlled legislature significantly altered lines in Montgomery County, drawing on the Washington region’s surging minority population to make the district held by the state’s senior Republican, Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, majority Democrat. Plaintiffs argue that in doing so, Democrats also diluted to voting strength of minorities.
If the plaintiffs next get their way, the timing of Maryland’s April 3 congressional primary could become an issue.
The plaintiffs, who are backed by the Fannie Lou Hamer Political Action Committee and Republicans, want a trial to begin in January.
A lengthier discussion of the same good news is here at the Maryland Reporter.
Keep your fingers crossed!
This crazy map and O’Malley’s war on rural Maryland was the main topic of discussion this past Saturday in Washington County, here.