Virginia Democrat accuses his party of gerrymandering in proposed redistricting map

Virginia Democrat accuses his party of gerrymandering in proposed redistricting map
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A Virginia state Democrat on Thursday accused his party of “gerrymandering in response to gerrymandering” during a special special session of the Virginia state legislature.

“It’s a self-serving political power grab,” state Del. Steve Heretick said, according to The Washington Post. “It’s gerrymandering in response to gerrymandering. It’s tit for tat.”

Virginia Democrats proposed a redistricting map on Wednesday that Republicans, as well as Heretick, have criticized.

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Thursday marked the start of the special session that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) called last week to redraw districts at the request of a federal court.

The Post reported that lawmakers on Thursday didn’t come close to agreeing on how to redraw the map.

Virginia Republicans have said they intend to pursue an appeal to the United States Supreme Court in an effort to overturn a ruling in June from the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.

That court ruled 2-1 that 11 House of Delegates districts were gerrymandered along racial lines, ordering lawmakers to redraw the lines by Oct. 30.

GOP leaders have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to delay that ruling, saying in their motion that the district court ignored "objective evidence of neutral redistricting decisions."