Map of the Democratic Party Voids Building drawn by the Democrats on the top of New York

New York’s highest court on Wednesday ruled that Democratic leaders violated the state’s Constitution when they solicited new congressional and Senate districts, and ordered a The court-appointed special superintendent draws alternate lines for this year’s pivotal midterm elections.

In a 32 page verdictThe divided New York state appeals court mocked Democrats for defying the will of voters who passed constitutional reform in 2014 to limit political influence during the redistricting process. region and set up a new external committee to guide the process.

The judges also found that Democratic-designed congressional districts had been “drawn with unacceptable partisan intent,” in violation of the state’s express ban on partisan criticism. and undercut the party’s national campaign to portray itself as a suffragette.

“Through the 2014 amendments, the people of this state passed significant redistricting reforms to ensure that the starting point for redistricting legislation would be county lines provided by a bipartisan commission following substantial public participation thus ensuring each political party and all interested persons have a say in the composition of those lines,” Chief Justice Janet DiFiore wrote to a majority of the four judges.

The ruling, which has not been appealed, has dealt a stinging defeat to Democrats in Albany and in Washington, and has thrown this year’s election cycle into deep uncertainty.

Party leaders hope that the Court of Appeals, with all seven judges appointed by Democratic governors, will overturn earlier decisions by a Republican judge in Steuben County and a bipartisan appeals court in Rochester.

Instead, the high court delivered an even more damning ruling denying the Democratic-dominated State’s Legislative Opportunity the chance to redraw its own maps. That task should be handled by a particularly politically neutral master, the judges said, with oversight at the trial court level.

The court also pointed out that the June 28 primaries for the congressional districts and the state Senate will likely have to be postponed until August to allow time for new maps and candidates. Collect petitions to be eligible to vote.

National Democrats drew on a map of the New York congress to pick three new seats this fall and offset the benefits of a nationwide Republican redistricting. With Democratic interests likely to be erased or minimized in New York, Republicans are now well on their way to making modest gains nationally, easing the road to regaining control of the House by the end of the year. this fall.

Democrats also look forward to the State Senate maps they passed in February to help protect the majority of the party in Albany.

Wednesday’s decision is a milestone in New York jurisprudence, the first time since the 1960s that the Court of Appeals overturned the district boundaries that had been approved by legislators during the reinstatement process. their decade-long regional division.

But the ruling is part of a growing nationwide trend in which state courts have taken more aggressive stances in controlling anti-partisan behavior as federal courts have was excluded by the Supreme Court from legal battles over partisan conduct.

This year alone, the state courts of Ohio, North Carolina, Kansas and Maryland have dismissed plans put forward by lawmakers for violating the outlawed state’s constitutional language, the same language that voters use. New York passed it in 2014. The courts are widely expected. careful assessment new lines in Florida that fully support Republicansalso.

Unlike New York, however, some courts have indicated they will allow the 2022 election to take place on contaminated maps, potentially putting Democrats at a greater disadvantage globally. country.

Judges in New York have been silent about whether to reschedule the primaries for other contested seats, including for the governor and the state Assembly, leaving the matter to the court judge. trial judge, Patrick F. McAllister, and the State Board of Elections for details. with “all in a hurry.” But the judges seemed to support the idea, pointing out that New York has a history of holding double-sided primaries.

Justice McAllister has appointed Jonathan Cervas, a postdoctoral fellow at Carnegie Mellon University, as a special master to draw the lines of Congress and the State Senate.

Given the appeals court judges’ reasoning, the Board’s maps only seem to exist because the Republicans who brought the case did not explicitly challenge them.

Governor Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, was not immediately available for comment on the decision. A spokesman for Senate Democrats said they were evaluating it Wednesday afternoon. Republicans were absolutely delighted.

“The will of the people defeated the Corruption Albany Machine in a huge victory for democracy, fair elections and the Constitution!” Representative Nicole Malliotakis, an endangered New York City Republican, wrote on Twitter.

Malliotakis’ Staten Island District is among several areas where the Democrats’ congressional map will become significantly greener by more liberal voters from Park Slope in Brooklyn. The map also creates new Democratic reception opportunities on the eastern end of Long Island and in Central New York, while enhancing the Democratic-held swing seats in the Hudson Valley, by cramming conservative voters in only a handful of counties.

In total, the map would give Democrats an edge in 22 of New York’s 26 congressional districts, compared with 19 seats currently held by Democrats and eight by Republicans. New York is expected to lose an overall county later this year because it has not kept pace with population growth in other states, as noted by the 2020 census.

At the very least, the process will weed out candidates from both parties, who have been in limbo for months, and could end up leaving some, like Alessandra Biaggi, a Democratic senator. represent areas of the Bronx and Westchester counties, outside the county boundaries they have spent months competing against.

Others could benefit from a reboot, like Suraj Patel, a Democrat challenging Representative Carolyn Maloney in Manhattan, who is in danger of being excluded from the vote for not gathering enough opinions. valid recommendation.

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