The state Supreme Court today denied a motion from Gov. Tony Evers to accept a report from his expert witness that seeks to justify his proposal to create a seventh majority Black Assembly district.
The expert testimony also argued the map proposed by GOP lawmakers — which would drop the number of majority Black Assembly districts to five from the current six — would violate the Voting Rights Act.
The high court did not expand on its decision to deny Evers’ request to submit his motion less than a day after the guv submitted his motion. The Legislature in its response to Evers’ request argued the Dem guv should not be granted “special privilege” to submit more evidence because doing so would place an unnecessary burden on attorneys representing the Legislature and prolong the case.
Ever’s filing comes as Wisconsin’s justices consider their next step after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned their 4-3 ruling that put Evers’ Assembly and Senate maps in place for the 2022 elections.
The U.S. Supreme Court struck down that decision, finding the state justices had failed to do the analysis necessary to show a seventh Black Assembly district is justified under federal standards.
The motion from Dem AG Josh Kaul argues Evers’ maps do not violate the Voting Rights Act. It argued failure to adopt the motion as evidence of why a seventh district is warranted would be a “serious legal error.”
“Together with the existing record, it shows that the VRA requires the creation of seven majority-Black districts,” the motion reads. “Conversely, it demonstrates that both the preexisting map, and, to an even greater extent, the Legislature’s proposal, unlawfully pack voters in violation of the VRA.”
See Evers’ motion here.
Note: This item was updated to include the Supreme Court’s denial of Ever’s motion.