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Series

2005

Law and Politics

Election Law

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Full-Text Articles in Law

When Judges Carve Democracies: A Primer On Court-Drawn Redistricting Plans, Nathaniel Persily Jun 2005

When Judges Carve Democracies: A Primer On Court-Drawn Redistricting Plans, Nathaniel Persily

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This essay presents guidelines for courts that undertake to draw their own redistricting plans. Although several dozen courts over the last four redistricting cycles have drawn their own plans, there is precious little in the case law or secondary sources to provide guidance. As a result, courts vary considerably in the procedures they follow and the substantive factors they take into account in their plans. This essay discusses the unique legal constraints on court-drawn plans and assesses the costs and benefits of following various procedures or substantive redistricting principles. The unique context of each case that spurs judicial involvement will ...