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Illinois Republican House incumbents sue state over Democratic remap

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WASHINGTON--Ten Republican members of the Illinois House congressional delegation and others sued the Illinois State Board of Elections on Wednesday, asserting the new districts drawn by Democrats discriminates against Republican and Latino voters.

The lawsuit calls the Democratic map a "partisan gerrymander." READ THE LAWSUIT HERE .......... Federal_Complaint_FINAL_7.27.11.pdf

The only Illinois House GOP House member not to join in the suit was Rep. Tim Johnson (R-Ill.) Illinois lost a seat in redistricting--to 18 from 19. Illinois Democrats, who controlled the remap process gifted the eight Illinois Democratic incumbents with districts designed to keep them in office. Illinois Republicans--with the exception of Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.) face, if the current map stands, hard political decisions, since the map was drawn to force some of them to either retire, run against each other or face districts drained of GOP votes.

In a statement, the GOP members said,"In joining this lawsuit, we strongly contest the Democrats' congressional redistricting map in Illinois. From the beginning, we have said that this map cannot stand, because it disrespects the will of voters, discriminates against the state's growing Hispanic population, and fails the tests for compactness and protecting communities of interest.

"While we are disappointed that Governor Quinn chose to rubber-stamp this flawed map, we are confident that an impartial review of the facts in court will expose the serious defects in this map and reverse the naked partisan power-grab contemplated by the Democrats.

"We look forward to the restoration of fairness and Constitutional principles in the redistricting process. The creation of a balanced congressional map is necessary to ensure that the people of Illinois have an opportunity to express their will at the ballot box and elect those representatives who best reflect their shared interests."

The lawsuit said the Democratic mapmakers "packed" Latino voters into the 4th congressional district in an effort to dilute and "deny" the influence of their growing numbers in other communities. Illinois first--and only Latino district was created in 1991 under the federal Voting Rights Act to yield a Latino congressman--which it did, Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.).

The Illinois GOP ten:

Rep. Judy Biggert (Il-13) Rep. Peter Roskam (Il-6)

Rep. Robert Dold (Il-10) Rep. Bobby Schilling (Il-17)

Rep. Randy Hultgren (Il-14) Rep. Aaron Schock (Il-18)

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (Il-11) Rep. John Shimkus (Il-19)

Rep. Don Manzullo (Il-16) Rep. Joe Walsh (Il-8)

THE PLAINTIFFS AND DEFENDANTS

COMMITTEE FOR A FAIR AND
BALANCED MAP, JUDY BIGGERT,
ROBERT J. DOLD, RANDY HULTGREN,
ADAM KINZINGER, DONALD MANZULLO,
PETER J. ROSKAM, BOBBY SCHILLING,
AARON SCHOCK, JOHN M. SHIMKUS, JOE
WALSH, RALPH RANGEL, LOU
SANDOVAL, LUIS SANABRIA, MICHELLE
CABALLERO, EDMUND BREZINSKI, and
LAURA WAXWEILER,
Plaintiffs,
v.
ILLINOIS STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS,
WILLIAM M. MCGUFFAGE, JESSE R.
SMART, BRYAN A. SCHNEIDER, BETTY J.
COFFRIN, HAROLD D. BYERS, JUDITH C.
RICE, CHARLES W. SCHOLZ, and ERNEST
L. GOWEN,
Defendants.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on July 27, 2011 10:30 AM.

Rahm Emanuel July 27, 2011 public schedule. CTA safety with Forrest Claypool was the previous entry in this blog.

State Sen. Susan Garrett not seeking re-election is the next entry in this blog.

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