PENNSYLVANIA

Gerrymandering Case Remains in State Courts

A state senator leader tried to get it moved to federal court.

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Ally Mutnick
Nov. 17, 2017, 10:11 a.m.

“Days after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court fast-tracked a state lawsuit challenging the congressional map as an unconstitutional gerrymander designed to favor Republicans, ordering Commonwealth Court to decide it by the end of the year,” state Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R) “moved the case to federal court. He argued that since a special election has been scheduled to fill the Pittsburgh-area seat left vacant by” former Rep. Tim Murphy (R-18), “a state court decision would interfere with a federal election. But on Thursday, just two days later, Scarnati’s attorneys backtracked, asking to return the case to state court less than an hour before a scheduled hearing” because “House Speaker Mike Turzai, a co-defendant in the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania lawsuit, disagreed with Scarnati’s action. … In the brief hearing in the federal courthouse in Philadelphia, Judge Michael M. Baylson agreed to send the case back to the state Supreme Court. … The trial remains scheduled to begin Dec. 11.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

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