Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Federal Lawsuit Against GAB Claims Republican Redistricting Map Deprives Hispanic Community From A Majority Voting District

Attorney Peter Guyon Earle

Photo: HNG

Voces de la Frontera and plaintiffs seeking to boost Hispanic voting age citizens in the 8th Assembly District by 52 percent.

By H. Nelson Goodson
November 1, 2011

Milwaukee - On Monday, Attorney Peter Guyon Earle filed a federal lawsuit against the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board. Last Thursday, Hispanic News Network U.S.A. broke the story by reporting the lawsuit was expected to be filed. The lawsuit claims, that the Wisconsin Republican controlled legislature passed a redistricting map which deprives the Hispanic community in Milwaukee's South side of an effective voting majority in the 8th Assembly District.
The Republican controlled state legislature and Governor Scott Walker (R) approved a redistricting map that cuts 8 percent of Latino voting age citizens in the 8th Assembly District. The plaintiffs include Voces de la Frontera (VDLF), a non-profit organization, workers right and an immigrant rights advocate, Ramiro Vega, Olga Vega, Jose Perez and Erica Ramirez, according to Attorney Earle.
Earle stated in Tuesday's press release by VDLF, the map violates the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which "precludes the state of Wisconsin from minimizing the opportunities for minority groups, including Latino citizens to participate in the political process."
"The population of the Latino community on Milwaukee's South side had increased by 44%, to the point that it was sufficiently large to support a geographically compact single legislative district with a majority of voting age Latinos who are citizens of the United States. The Walker redistricting plan reduces that potential majority to just over 40%, and demonstrates intent to deprive Milwaukee's Latino community of a voting majority by dividing and diluting our community's vote," said Christine Neumann-Ortiz, executive director of VDLF.
The defendants named in the lawsuit includes members of the Government Accountability Board, Gerald Nichol, Thomas Cane, Thomas Barland, Timothy Vocke and Kevin Kennedy.
The plaintiffs claim, that the Republican controlled legislature passed a statewide redistricting plan, which cuts about 8 percent of Hispanic voting age citizens (HVAC) from the current 48 percent of HVAC in the Milwaukee South side district reducing it to a mere 40 percent. The plaintiffs will seek for the federal court to increase the HVAC in the 8th District to 52 percent, making a Latino majority district in 2012. They will also seek an injunction and to consolidate their lawsuit along with several other federal cases already filed by Democrats concerning redistricting.

Connected by MOTOBLUR™ on T-Mobile

No comments: