Latino Groups File Lawsuit Against Texas Redistricting; Emphasized Diluted Voting Rights by Latinos
The recent redistricting maps drawn by the Texas Legislature prompted several Latino individuals and groups to file a lawsuit Monday, challenging the move that the Latino groups claimed diluted their voting rights.
Latino Groups File Lawsuit Against Abbott, Esparza
According to NBC News, the lawsuit was filed by the Latino groups Monday afternoon days prior to the completion of the Texas Legislature of the U.S. House maps. The groups pointed out that the maps shored up Republicans and did not have additional Latino majority districts, despite the fact that Latinos as a group accounted for more than half of the state's growth.
In their suit filed against Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Deputy Secretary of State Jose A. Esparza filed in federal court in El Paso, the Latino organizations have asked the federal court to toss out the new maps targeting to discriminate against them.
The plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed on Monday included the League of United Latin American Citizens, Mi Familia Vota, and Southwest Voter Registration Education Project. It also included other organizations and even individual voters joined.
The congressional maps are still in negotiations. The House and Senate in Texas are still ironing out their differences regarding redistricting.
Meanwhile, the Voting Rights Act protects minority voters' right to choose who represents them, whether or not that is a person of color.
Moreover, the president and the general counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund also known as MALDEF, Thomas Saenz, said that it was a move that disregarded the minority group.
The Latino legal civil rights group leader pointed out that the maps were the same as previous attempts by Texas' GOP-controlled Legislature to dilute the voting rights of the Latinos. MALDEF is currently representing the plaintiffs.
Saenz said that the state of Texas has a unique record of disregarding the growth of the Latino community that could be traced back decades.
Latinos Consider Texas Political Maps as Intentionally Discriminatory
Based on the lawsuit filed by the Latino Groups, the maps drawn for congressional, legislative, and State Board of Education districts violated Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act and should be thrown out. The lawsuit was filed by the group in the U.S. District Court for Western Texas.
The plaintiffs argued the new maps for the U.S. House, Texas House, Texas Senate, and State Board of Education did not reflect the growth of the Hispanic community, The Dallas Morning News reported.
Furthermore, Republicans have defended the maps. They have stated that they were drawn without regard to race and that the maps have passed legal tests.
On the other hand, based on the 2020 census, the numbers showed that Texas' population grew by almost 4 million individuals. The latest recorded numbers made it the only state to add two congressional seats because of the growth in terms of its population. The numbers showed the Latino population in Texas grew by 1.98 million.
This article is owned by Latin Post.
Written by: Jess Smith
WATCH: University of Houston professor shares thoughts on Texas redistricting | FOX 7 Austin
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