High court’s ruling shifts gerrymandering focus to states

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The battle for political advantage in state capitols is poised to become more intense after the U.S. Supreme Court decision declaring that federal judges have no role in settling disputes over partisan gerrymandering.

Thursday’s ruling could empower Republicans and Democrats who hold full control of state legislatures and governorships to become even more aggressive in drawing districts to their benefit after the 2020 census.

It could shift legal challenges against partisan gerrymandering to state courts. And it could prompt more efforts to reform redistricting procedures through amendments to state constitutions.

Ultimately, it also could mean that voters upset with the party in power must seek change the old-fashioned way — by electing different lawmakers, no matter how difficult that might seem in gerrymandered districts.

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