Callais v. Landry

Location: Louisiana
Status: Ongoing
Last Update: March 15, 2024

What's at Stake

Whether the congressional map Louisiana adopted to cure a Voting Rights Act violation in Robinson v. Ardoin is itself unlawful as a gerrymander.

After the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision finding that plaintiffs in Robinson v. Ardoin were likely to succeed in proving that Louisiana’s congressional map violated Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, the Louisiana legislature enacted a new congressional map in January 2023 containing two districts with majorities of Black Voting Age Population.

On January 31, 2024, a group of white Mississippians challenged this new map as a racial gerrymander under the Fourteenth amendment. The Chief Judge of the Fifth Circuit assigned a three-judge panel to hear the case.

The Robinson plaintiffs, represented by the ACLU, ACLU of Louisiana, Legal Defense Fund, and Paul Weiss, sought to intervene to defend the map. While the motion was pending, the panel set the case for expedited trial in April 2024. The panel initially denied the motion to intervene except as to any remedial phase should the plaintiffs prevail, but on reconsideration, allowed the Robinson and Galmon plaintiffs to intervene in the liability phase in part, limiting involvement to presenting evidence as to whether race predominated in drawing the 2024 congressional map, and whether, if so, the map meets strict scrutiny.

A trial on the merits is expected in April 2024.

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