Skip to content

New York told to redraw House map that gave Democrats an edge

Judge rules legislature should not have ignored commission

The New York map a state judge overturned on Thursday would have turned Republican Rep. Nicole Malliotakis' seat from one Donald Trump won with 55 percent of the vote to one Joe Biden would have won with 54 percent.
The New York map a state judge overturned on Thursday would have turned Republican Rep. Nicole Malliotakis' seat from one Donald Trump won with 55 percent of the vote to one Joe Biden would have won with 54 percent. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A New York state judge threw out the state’s congressional map Thursday, ruling that Democrats who control the state legislature cannot ignore a 2014 constitutional amendment creating a commission to create nonbiased maps. 

That commission, known as the Independent Redistricting Commission, did not submit a second map proposal after its first failed to gain enough support. The Democratic-controlled legislature then passed its own maps.

“The legislature is not free to ignore the IRC maps and develop their own,” acting Supreme Court Justice Patrick McAllister wrote in an 18-page ruling.

The ruling, which is expected to be stayed and appealed, comes as candidates have been collecting signatures to get on the ballot. McAllister wrote that the court would give the legislature until April 11 “to enact new bipartisan supported proposed maps that meet the constitutional requirements.” 

Mike Murphy, a spokesman for the state Senate Democratic majority, said the ruling was “one step in the process.”

“We always knew this case would be decided by the appellate courts. We are appealing this decision and expect this decision will be stayed as the appeal process proceeds,” he told Zack Fink, a New York politics podcaster. 

The map crafted by the legislature gave Democrats an opportunity to pick up as many as three additional House seats in a year. The state lost one seat in reapportionment.

Recent Stories

Alabama showdown looms between Carl and Moore

Supreme Court grapples with state social media content laws

Data suggest Biden or Trump may struggle with Congress in second term

State of suspension: Lawmakers gripe about fast-tracked bills under Johnson

Health package talks break down amid broader spending feud

Capitol Lens | A Dunn deal