U.S. Supreme Court Paves the Way for Louisiana To Redraw Congressional Map

WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Monday, June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated an order blocking Louisiana’s congressional map for diluting the voting strength of Black voters, paving the way for Louisiana to redraw its congressional map with a second majority-Black district. Now, litigation will go back to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The order stems from Ardoin v. Robinson, a case challenging Louisiana’s congressional map under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA). Today’s order vacated its previous pause of a lower court decision that temporarily blocked Louisiana’s congressional map for likely violating Section 2 of the VRA.

The voters and civil rights organizations who brought the case against Louisiana’s congressional map argue that Black voters can only elect their candidate of choice in one of the state’s six congressional districts even though Black residents of Louisiana compose over 33% of the total population and vote cohesively as a bloc. The lawsuit alleges that by failing to include a second minority opportunity district, the map dilutes the voting strength of Black voters in violation of Section 2 of the VRA

In June 2022, a federal district court blocked Louisiana’s map for likely diluting the voting strength of Black Louisianans in violation of Section 2 of the VRA and ordered the state to adopt a new map with a second majority-Black district. Republican officials appealed this decision to the Supreme Court and requested emergency relief, arguing that the Louisiana case “presents the same question as” the Alabama case, Allen v. Milligan. The Court granted the Republicans’ requested relief and paused the decision blocking Louisiana’s map while also holding the case pending the outcome of Allen

On June 8, the Court issued its opinion in Allen a landmark ruling upholding Section 2 of the VRA. For Louisiana, this meant that once the case challenging the state’s congressional map was unpaused, litigation over the map would continue. Today, the Court took a final administrative step to allow litigation in the Louisiana case to continue and most importantly, to reinstate the order blocking Louisiana’s congressional map. With the case now permitted to move forward, Black voters in Louisiana will have the opportunity to gain fairer representation under a new congressional map. 

Read the order here.

Learn more about the case here.