By Nancy Wang
As the drafters of the constitutional amendment that created the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission and the primary supporters of the ballot initiative that approved it, VNP has a distinctly strong interest in ensuring that the Commission functions as intended and that efforts to undermine its authority or undo the purpose of the amendment are curbed. Last year, VNP successfully defended the amendment in two lawsuits by which Tony Daunt and the Michigan Republican Party were seeking to invalidate the amendment.
This February, we intervened in Banerian v. Benson, another attempt by Michigan Republican lawmakers to undermine the redistricting amendment. They asked the Court to adopt an interpretation of the amendment that was at odds with the text itself; VNP defended the Commission’s use of the constitutional redistricting criteria in the priority in which they were enshrined into law by the voters. On March 5, the Court ruled in our favor and dismissed the Republicans’ claim.
In the lawsuit, the Plaintiffs are also arguing that the Commission’s congressional map fails to comply with the federal Constitutional requirement of “one person, one vote.” That claim is still pending and the Court will hear oral arguments on March 16, 2022.