Redistricting

Alex Brandon / AP

President Donald Trump is encouraging Pennsylvania Republicans to challenge a new court-imposed congressional map all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, if necessary.

Trump tweeted Tuesday that Republicans' map "was correct! Don't let the Dems take elections away from you so that they can raise taxes & waste money!"

The Democratic-majority Pennsylvania Supreme Court voted 4-3 on Monday to impose a new map for the state's 18 congressional districts, effective for the May 15 primary.

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

Republicans say they'll go to federal court this week to try to block new court-ordered boundaries of Pennsylvania's congressional districts from remaining in effect for 2018's elections.

Pennsylvania's New Court-Ordered Congressional Map Could Boost Democrats

22 hours ago
Governor Tom Wolf / Flickr

Pennsylvania's high court issued a new congressional district map for the state's 2018 elections on its self-imposed deadline on Monday, potentially giving Democrats a boost in their quest to capture control of the U.S. House unless Republicans are able to stop it in federal court.

Wikimedia Commons

The deadline has come and gone to submit congressional map proposals that meet the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s new guidelines.

When justices first declared the maps unconstitutional about four weeks ago, they ordered the GOP-controlled legislature and Democratic Governor Tom Wolf to negotiate a compromise on new ones.

That compromise never happened. 

Pennsylvania Department of General Services

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf is promising he'll send a politically impartial congressional district map to the state Supreme Court by its Thursday deadline if the Republican-controlled legislature cannot draw one themselves.

Lawmakers Won't Meet Deadline To Vote On Congressional Map

Feb 8, 2018
Wikimedia Commons

Republican leaders in the Pennsylvania Legislature said Thursday they would not be able to meet a court-ordered deadline to hold a vote on a replacement map for the state's congressional districts, but that they still hoped to develop a plan in the coming days.

Keith Srakocic / AP

UPDATED: 10:18 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018

Pennsylvania lawmakers headed home Wednesday with two days left to comply with a court order to redraw boundaries of the state's widely criticized congressional districts as top Republican lawmakers hunkered down to figure out a plan.

Voting sessions were canceled amid a winter storm, and rank-and-file lawmakers awaited word from House Republican leaders about whether they would be recalled to Harrisburg by Friday's deadline to vote on a new congressional district map that they had not yet seen.

Matt Rourke / AP

Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has decided not to intervene in the case requiring Pennsylvania lawmakers to draw new congressional districts before the May primary, there’s just three days left to create a new map.

Map from the office of Lt. Gov. Mike Stack

Pennsylvania Republicans have lost what was likely their best shot at getting out of redrawing congressional maps, after the state Supreme Court declared them unconstitutional.

Governor Tom Wolf

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf visited Point Park University Thursday afternoon to seek public input on creating a less partisan congressional map. 

Drawing New Congressional Districts Gets Off To Slow Start

Jan 30, 2018
WHYY

 There are a few signs of progress, a week into the three-week period established by the state Supreme Court for lawmakers to produce a replacement congressional district map.

Pennsylvania GOP Take Gerrymandering Case To U.S. High Court

Jan 25, 2018
J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Pennsylvania's top Republican lawmakers asked the U.S. Supreme Court Thursday to stop an order by the state's highest court in a gerrymandering case that threw out the boundaries of its 18 congressional districts and ordered them redrawn within three weeks.

Republicans who control Pennsylvania's Legislature wrote that the state Supreme Court justices unconstitutionally usurped the authority of lawmakers to create congressional districts and they asked the nation's high court to put the decision on hold while it considers their claims.

Keystone Crossroads

In the wake of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision to declare the state’s congressional maps unconstitutional, lawmakers are starting the redrawing process before the Feb. 15 deadline.

Matt Rourke / AP

State House Majority Leader Dave Reed is officially running for congress—becoming the second top Republican in the chamber to seek higher office this year.

He’s aiming to grab the sprawling southwestern 9th District seat held by retiring republican Bill Shuster. But his decision comes at a time when that district—and all the others in Pennsylvania—are facing a somewhat uncertain future.

On Monday, Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court ruled the state congressional maps unconstitutional, and ordered the legislature and governor to submit new ones by Feb. 15.

Map from the office of Lt. Gov. Mike Stack

Next week, the state Supreme Court will hear a lawsuit claiming Pennsylvania’s congressional map is an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander.

Top state Democrats chimed in Wednesday in an attempt to sway the court in favor of the plaintiffs.

In a press conference held in the capitol, Lt. Gov. Mike Stack offered an alternative map he referred to as the “Stack map.”

Second Pennsylvania Gerrymandering Challenge Heads To Trial

Dec 11, 2017
Keystone Crossroads

A state court trial over congressional district boundaries is about to get underway in Pennsylvania as a parallel case awaits a decision in federal court.

The Commonwealth Court proceeding Monday in Harrisburg was put on a fast track by the state Supreme Court a month ago.

The lawsuit by a group of voters says the 2011 Republican-drawn map is too partisan and violates the state constitution. They want a new map.

A separate challenge was the subject of a federal trial last week in Philadelphia.

Two Fast-Tracked Court Cases Could Change The Political Face Of Pennsylvania

Nov 15, 2017
Keystone Crossroads

With drastic changes to Pennsylvania’s political landscape hanging in the balance, two lawsuits challenging the state’s congressional map are moving forward at rapid speed — one in state courts, the other in federal.

Katie Meyer / 90.5 WESA

Several activists were arrested Monday while blocking a hallway during a rally at the state Capitol.

Many had just finished a three-day walk from Lancaster to Harrisburg—the second one they’ve done this year.

The group’s goal is to call attention to stalled bills that would ban gifts to lawmakers and seek to make the redistricting process less partisan.

The walk to the Capitol was 36 miles, and temperatures fell below freezing at times.

But when the March on Harrisburg group reached the Capitol, their energy was high

Justices Order Pennsylvania Redistricting Lawsuit To Proceed

Nov 10, 2017
Googlemaps

A state-level challenge to how congressional districts were drawn by Republicans six years ago will proceed on a compressed schedule, a closely divided Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled on Thursday.

The Supreme Court's 4-3 decision overturned a lower court judge's ruling last month that had put the dispute on hold.

Min Xian / WPSU

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to put on ice a federal lawsuit challenging Pennsylvania's congressional districts approved after the 2010 census.

Google Maps

Republican leaders in Pennsylvania's General Assembly on Wednesday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to put on ice a federal lawsuit challenging the state's congressional districts approved after the 2010 census.

House Speaker Mike Turzai and Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati asked Justice Samuel Alito in a filing for a stay of the lawsuit by five Pennsylvania voters against the governor and elections officials.

Voter Advocates Urge PA Senate Leader To Reform Redistricting Process

Oct 20, 2017
Min Xian / WPSU

Fair Districts PA delivered postcards collected from constituents to State Senator Jake Corman’s office in Bellefonte on Thursday, urging the Republican majority leader to to pass legislation to reform the redistricting process in Pennsylvania.

About 25 members and supporters of Fair Districts PA gathered in the parking lot outside Corman’s office with over 500 postcards stapled onto a giant board.

“The districting process in Pennsylvania is rigged and we need to stop that,” said Toby Short, a volunteer for the advocacy group.

Katie Meyer / 90.5 WESA

Advocates for overhauling the redistricting process packed the Capitol rotunda Tuesday hoping to persuade lawmakers to take their quest seriously.

Pennsylvania's congressional districts are considered among the most unfair in the country.

Maryland To Pennsylvania (And 4 Other States): We'll Redistrict When You Do

Apr 4, 2017
Googlemaps

President Donald Trump, a Republican, won Pennsylvania by a narrow margin of 68,000 votes. The state has about 900,000 more registered Democrats than Republicans. 

Gerrymandering Battle Draws A Crowd In PA

Mar 1, 2017
Dave Davies / WHYY

Could a citizens' group defy tradition and change Pennsylvania politics?

Fair Districts PA, which has taken on the issue of gerrymandering in state political boundaries, is at least making some noise.

Legislative Data Processing Center

 A proposed bill is looking to change how Pennsylvania draws its legislative and congressional districts

The bill’s sponsor, Monroe County Republican David Parker said the measure would cut down on gerrymandering.

Gerrymandering is prevalent in Pennsylvania—it’s when legislative maps are drawn to benefit a political party.

Parker said the ultimate results don’t benefit constituents.

“When these districts become so large and kind of snake around and are odd shapes, it’s difficult for them to truly represent everybody in the whole district,” he said.

Plan Would Take Politicians Out Of Redistricting

Jan 25, 2016
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania’s next redistricting effort is five years away, but one state lawmaker is already thinking about changing how it’s done.

Sen. John Wozniak (D-Cambria) plans to propose an overhaul that would take politicians out of the process of redrawing district lines to accommodate population changes.

Wozniak echoes the observations of pollsters and political science professors when he talks about partisan redistricting, and how Republican control of the process for the past two cycles has yielded GOP pickups and, Wozniak believes, more ideologically extreme candidates.