WASHINGTON, Dec. 10, 2011 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — LULAC voiced its extreme disappointment over the decision by the United States Supreme Court to grant the State of Texas’ Motion to Stay. The decision will not end the fight and LULAC will continue to litigate to ensure the full protection of the Voting Rights Act for Latinos. The case will return to the Federal District Court to redraw the maps again and LULAC will ensure that Latinos voting districts are protected.
“It was a desperate appeal by the Texas Governor and the Texas Attorney General to the Supreme Court to intervene and set aside maps that were legally drawn by a federal court panel in San Antonio, Texas,” said LULAC National President Margaret Moran.
Citing violations of the Voting Rights Act, LULAC is pursuing litigation in New Mexico and Georgia and soon in Alabama maintaining that the political maps drawn by GOP lawmakers do not reflect the growth in the states’ Hispanic and black populations. Currently, Texas has received four additional Congressional seats as a result of the 2010 Census which indicated that the Texas population grew by almost four million and Hispanics comprise 65 percent of that growth.
“Although we are extremely disappointed over the decision by the Supreme Court, we will not abandon our fight to ensure that Latinos voting districts receive the full protection of the Voting Rights Act,” said LULAC Counsel Luis Roberto Vera, Jr.
On November 17, 2011, a federal court panel consisting of three judges in San Antonio issued redistricting maps that sided with LULAC, MALC, NAACP and the Latino Taskforce, represented by MALDEF, and other individual plaintiffs in drawing new maps for both the Texas House of Representatives, and Texas U.S. Congress.
With regard to the Texas Senate, LULAC was the only plaintiff representing Texas Senator Wendy Davis from Senate District 10 where the legislature removed 250,000 Latino voters from the district, setting the stage for the candidate’s absolute defeat. LULAC successfully persuaded the court to restore the 250,000 Latino voters to District 10.
The newly created coalition district in the Dallas/Fort Worth which is majority minority was drawn by LULAC. LULAC also fought for and was successful in restoring Congressional District 25, which runs from Corpus Christi to Brownsville, to its original boundaries as a Latino majority district. Also the Travis County District, represented by Congressman Lloyd Doggett, was also restored to almost its original boundaries. In place of Congressional District 35, LULAC was the only plaintiff that fought and was successful in reuniting South and Southeast San Antonio with South and Southeast Bexar County, as a Latino voting bloc.
In the Texas House of Representatives, LULAC joined with MALC, in its fight regarding the redistricting of the Texas House of Representatives. With these efforts, LULAC, MALC and the Latino Taskforce (MALDEF) were successful in convincing the Federal Court to redraw six new Texas House of Representative Districts.
The League of United Latin American Citizens, the oldest and largest Hispanic membership organization in the country, advances the economic conditions, educational attainment, political influence, health, housing and civil rights of Hispanic Americans through community-based programs operating nearly 900 LULAC councils nationwide.
SOURCE League of United Latin American Citizens