Arkansas Congressional Redistricting Challenge (Christian Ministerial Alliance)
Christian Ministerial Alliance v. Thurston
Lawsuit filed on behalf of the Christian Ministerial Alliance and four Black residents of Pulaski County against Arkansas Secretary of State John Thurston (R) and Arkansas State Board of Election Commissioners challenging Arkansas’ congressional map drawn with 2020 census data. Specifically, the plaintiffs allege that Arkansas’ 2nd Congressional District is a racial gerrymander and that the plan was passed with discriminatory intent as a motivating factor in violation of the 14th and 15th Amendments. The plaintiffs allege that the plan “cracks” Pulaski County’s “large and politically effective Black Community” and divides those voters amongst three of the state’s four other congressional districts. The plaintiffs argue that the map “is a textbook case of ‘cracking’ a minority community to suppress its political voice. And this cracking is intentional.” The plaintiffs argue that “in cracking Black communities in Pulaski County into three separate congressional districts, Arkansas’s Legislature actively disregarded traditional redistricting principles and contradicted its own stated guiding principles.” The plaintiffs request that the court block the plan, order a new constitutionally compliant plan, place Arkansas under Section 3 preclearance and order that elections should not be held under the current congressional map.