Supreme Court Won’t Save Pennsylvania’s GOP-Friendly Gerrymander

A new political map, more favorable to Democrats, will remain in place for the 2018 midterms.

The new congressional map enacted by the Pennsylvania state supreme court.Pennsylvania Supreme Court/www.pacourts.us

The Supreme Court will not intervene in the legal battle over Pennsylvania’s congressional map, allowing the 2018 midterms to take place using a new map more favorable to Democrats. The state supreme court put the new map in place last month after finding that the old one violated the state constitution because it was excessively gerrymandered in favor of Republicans.

Last month, the GOP leaders of the Pennsylvania legislature appealed the case to the US Supreme Court in a last-ditch effort to get the new map thrown out. The justices waited nearly a month to announce whether they would weigh in on the case, causing election law experts to wonder if they might indeed take the case. But on Monday, the court released a one-sentence order stating that the Republicans’ appeal to the court had been denied.

The Supreme Court was the final court to weigh in on the matter. A federal district court on Monday also declined to take up the case.

The old map strongly favored Republicans, who consistently won 13 of the state’s 18 congressional seats in a state that is divided almost evenly. The new map will give Democrats more opportunities to win seats in November and could affect who controls the House of Representatives next year.

OUR NEW CORRUPTION PROJECT

The more we thought about how MoJo's journalism can have the most impact heading into the 2020 election, the more we realized that so many of today's stories come down to corruption: democracy and the rule of law being undermined by the wealthy and powerful for their own gain.

So we're launching a new Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption. We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We'll publish what we find as a major series in the summer of 2020, including a special issue of our magazine, a dedicated online portal, and video and podcast series so it doesn't get lost in the daily deluge of breaking news.

It's unlike anything we've done before and we've got seed funding to get started, but we're asking readers to help crowdfund this new beat with an additional $500,000 so we can go even bigger. You can read why we're taking this approach and what we want to accomplish in "Corruption Isn't Just Another Scandal. It's the Rot Beneath All of Them," and if you like how it sounds, please help fund it with a tax-deductible donation today.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate