LULAC Applauds the Department of Justice Decision in Texas Redistricting Case
Contact: Paloma Zuleta
Washington, DC – Today, in the District of Columbia Federal Court, the Department of Justice said it will fight the Texas Congressional plan and the State House Redistricting plan as being racially discriminatory and a violation of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. A trial will be scheduled on Wednesday, September 21st, where the State of Texas will have the burden of proof that the plans are not racially discriminatory.
Organizations that intervened with LULAC to fight the plan were, among others, the Texas Legislative Black Caucus, the Mexican American Legislative Caucus, the Texas Chapter of the NAACP, the Texas Latino Redistricting Taskforce. Advocates for LULAC, Counsel Luis Roberto Vera, Jr., and John Tanner, former Department of Justice Voting Rights Section Chief represented LULAC’s objections to the Texas redistricting maps. “As a result of the growing Hispanic population, Texas gained four new congressional districts. As a matter of fundamental fairness, those districts should have been drawn in a manner that would also create four new Latino performing districts,” said LULAC Counsel Luis Roberto Vera, Jr.
The Department did agree with the State of Texas that the Board of Education plan and the State Senate plan were not discriminatory despite the arguments made by LULAC and the other organizations. LULAC will vigorously oppose the state’s efforts to gain approval on the plan and will seek a fair redistricting plan.
“We are very pleased that the DOJ will oppose the discriminatory House and Congressional plan but we are disappointed in their decision not to oppose neither the Senate nor the Board of Education plan,” said John Tanner, attorney for the Texas Legislative Black Caucus and former Chief of the Justice Department Voting Section.
About LULAC: The League of United Latin American Citizens, the oldest and largest Hispanic membership organization in the country, advances the economic conditions, educational attainment, political influence, health, housing and civil rights of Hispanic Americans through community-based programs operating nearly 900 LULAC councils nationwide.