Lawsuit challenging GOP electoral maps to move forward

Written by The Associated Press | Nov 8, 2017 1:47 AM

Pennsylvania's 7th Congressional District is often considered the poster child of gerrymandering. The district cuts through five counties and a number of municipalities including Chester, Upper Darby and Glenolden. On the map, the district looks like an alien character from the classic arcade game Space Invaders. (Map Source)

(Philadelphia) -- A panel of judges has denied a motion to quash a federal lawsuit charging that Pennsylvania's congressional maps give Republicans an unfair electoral advantage.

The judges issued the ruling yesterday after lawyers for the state's Republican leaders asked them to dismiss the case brought by five Pennsylvania voters against the governor and elections officials.

Attorneys for House Speaker Mike Turzai and Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati said the legislative districts are lawful. But lawyers for the voters argue they were illegally drawn to favor one party over another.

Republicans won 13 of 18 congressional seats in the 2014 and 2016 elections despite earning a little over 50 percent of the vote.

The lawsuit also seeks to redraw lines before the 2018 midterm election. It's scheduled for trial in December.

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