Pennsylvania Redistricting Won’t See SCOTUS Detour

WASHINGTON (CN) – Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito refused to take up a Pennsylvania redistricting fight Monday, dealing a blow to lawmakers who are on deadline to redraw a congressional map gerrymandered for the GOP.

Adopted after the 2010 census, the map drew a challenge from the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania for its apparent effort to shore up Republican candidates by chopping up large counties like Montgomery across as many as five districts.

One district was so misshapen that the winner of a write-in contest organized by the Washington Post christened it “Goofy kicking Donald Duck.”

In a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans 5:4, the map helped Republicans in the last election to win 13 of 18 seats.

After ruling that the map was an unconstitutional gerrymander last week, the state Supreme Court ordered lawmakers 5-2 to finalize a new map for Democratic Governor Tom Wolf to review by Feb. 9.

The deadline inspired multiple stay applications to the U.S. Supreme Court, including one by Republican candidates for the upcoming May 15 congressional primaries.

Justice Alito, who handles emergency appeals from the Keystone state, denied the requests without comment Monday.

In addition to the application by the candidates, Alito denied a stay to the speaker of the Pennsylvania House, Mike Turzai, and the president pro tempore of the Pennsylvania, Joe Scarnati.

Both are Republicans. Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation has been 13-5 in favor of the GOP during the three election cycles since the GOP-drawn 2011 map took effect. Democrats hold all three statewide row offices.

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