Thursday, February 8, 2018

I Want To Know What Law Is edition

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Valentine’s Day is next week
So here’s an appropriately themed statehouse update for you
… sorry.
Love is in the air in state legislatures across the country, and by “love” I mean that 41 statehouses are currently in session, and they’re all just awash in sexy things like holding public hearings on bills and passing resolutions honoring local sports teams and voting on legislation.
Shhhhhhhhhh don’t judge my perception of sexy. Everyone’s got their own thing.
But everyone thinks winning is hot. And Democrats are positively on fire.
Burning Love: This past Tuesday, Democrats flipped yet another state legislative seat from red to blue. (It’s Democrats 35th state legislative pickup of the cycle.)

Want to feel the heat of more special elections? Next week features five contests on back-to-back days—two seats in Minnesota on Monday, Feb. 12, and seats in Florida, Oklahoma, and Georgia on Tuesday, Feb. 13.
Draw Me Two Times: PennsylvaniaRepublicans did not take late January’s state Supreme Court ruling against their gerrymandered congressional maps well.
If you’re just now tuning in, yeah, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court found that the state’s outrageous Republican gerrymander violated the state constitution’s guarantee of “free and equal” elections. It was rad.
Histrionics? Sounds like it. But threats are only idle until they’re not, and Pennsylvania’s Republican lawmakers have both the means and the motivation to make impeachment happen.
Here’s how they could do it:
Here’s why they could do it:
  • Democrats have a 5-2 majority on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and Republicans have almost zero chance of flipping the court back to a GOP majority before 2021.
  • In 2021, a commission of two Republicans, two Democrats, and a fifth member agreed upon by the other four create new state House and Senate maps.
  • If (when, let’s be real) the two Republicans and two Democrats fail to agree upon that fifth tie-breaking member, the state Supreme Court steps in to select the member. A Democratic-majority Supreme Court is likely to select a tiebreaker who will reject any map that unfairly benefits Republicans.
  • Additionally, legal challenges to the state House and Senate maps are normally handled by the state Supreme Court, placing another anti-GOP gerrymander trump card in Democrats’ hands.
The Democratic majority on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court thusly constitutes an existential threat to Republicans’ lopsided majorities in the the state legislature.
Stay tuned!
...can’t give his vote to no one else
He’d trade the GOP
For the good thing he’s found

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