3The latest Census reports that since 2000 the population of Texas grew by over fourmillion. This dramatic increase required the Texas legislature to create new voting districts forthe four se
ats added to the State’s congressional delegation,
art. I, § 2, cl. 3;
amend. XIV, § 2, and draw new boundaries for the state and congressional voting districts tocomply with the mandate of one-person, one-vote,
see Georgia v. Ashcroft
, 539 U.S. 461,488 n.2 (2003).Because Texas is a covered jurisdiction under section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965(VRA), 42 U.S.C. § 1973, the Attorney General of the United States or a three-judge panel of
this Court must approve, or “preclear,” any
redistricting plan before it can take effect.
§ 1973c(a). Texas chose not to seek administrative preclearance and instead seeks from thisCourt a declaratory judgment that its redistricting plans will
neither have “the purpose nor will
have the effect of denying or abridging the right to vote on account of race or color, or [languageminority group]
The United States opposes preclearance of the redistricting plans for
Texas’s congressional delegation and the State House of Representatives, but has
no quarrel withthe plan for the Texas Senate. Seven Intervenors raise a variety of challenges that collectivelyencompass all three plans. We conclude that Texas has failed to show that any of the redistrictingplans merits preclearance.
On July 19, 2011, Texas filed a complaint in this Court seeking a declaratory judgmentthat its newly enacted redistricting plans for the U.S. House of Representatives (Plan C185 or
Texas sought declaratory judgment that the three plans comply with section 5 in counts two, three, and fourof the complaint. In its first count, Texas also sought from this Court preclearance of its redistricting plan for theState Board of Education. No party objected to the plan, either in their written answers or during a conference callthe Court held with the parties on September 21, 2011. With no opposition and satisfied that the State Board of Education plan complies with section 5, we granted preclearance for that plan on September 22, 2011.
MinuteEntry Order, Sept. 22, 2011.
Case 1:11-cv-01303-RMC-TBG-BAH Document 230 Filed 08/28/12 Page 3 of 154