State of New Jersey

New Jersey Congressional Redistricting Challenge

Steinhardt v. New Jersey Redistricting Commission

Lawsuit filed in the New Jersey Supreme Court on behalf of Republican members of the redistricting commission challenging the process by which the New Jersey Congressional Redistricting Commission adopted a new congressional map. The commission members voted on party lines to adopt the map proposed by the Democratic commissioners, with commission chair and former New Jersey Supreme Court Justice John Wallace Jr. casting the tie-breaking vote in favor of the Democratic map. The plaintiffs argue that the commission’s “vote and establishment of Congressional district[s] for the next decade was invalid because it was contingent upon the flawed vote and reasoning by Chair Wallace” — specifically, that Wallace stated that he voted for the Democratic proposal rather than the Republican one because Republicans drew the congressional map in the last round of redistricting. The lawsuit argues that this reasoning by Wallace was “unreasonable” and violates the New Jersey and U.S. Constitutions’ equal protection and due process clauses. The plaintiffs ask the state Supreme Court to vacate the new map and to allow the commission to enact a new map. The court dismissed the case, finding that Wallace had “no disqualifying conflict” and this “Court has no role in the outcome of the redistricting process unless the map is ‘unlawful.'”

Case Documents

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