Return to News Jul 13, 2023

New York Appellate Court Orders Redistricting Commission to Redraw Congressional Map

WASHINGTON – On Thursday, a New York appellate court ruled in favor of a group of New York voters represented by Elias Law Group attorneys, ordering the New York State Independent Redistricting Commission to redraw the state’s congressional maps in accordance with a set of constitutional amendments to the redistricting process ratified by New York voters in 2014.

“Last year, New York voters cast their ballots under a congressional map that disregarded and marginalized minority communities and some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens. New Yorkers deserve the fair lines and fair process they voted for, and today’s decision is a huge step in the right direction. We are thrilled that the Court recognized the Independent Redistricting Commission’s constitutional duty to redraw New York’s congressional map. We will continue to advocate for the open, fair redistricting process that recognizes New York’s racial, ethnic, and geographic diversity,” said Elias Law Group Partner Aria Branch, who argued on behalf of the Hoffman appellants in a hearing last month.

In today’s ruling, the court found that “petitioners have demonstrated a clear legal right to the relief sought.”

“This determination honors the constitutional enactments as the means of providing a robust, fair, and equitable procedure for the determination of voting districts in New York. The right to participate in the democratic process is the most essential right in our system of governance. The procedures governing the redistricting process, all too easily abused by those who would seek to minimize the voters' voice and entrench themselves in the seats of power, must be guarded as jealously as the right to vote itself; in granting this petition, we return the matter to its constitutional design. Accordingly, we direct the IRC to commence its duties forthwith,” the court concluded.

Elias Law Group attorneys Aria Branch, Rachel Jacobs, Jonathan Hawley, Rich Medina, and Aaron Mukerjee contributed to this case.