Davis v. Bandemer

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Davis v. Bandemer
Seal of the United States Supreme Court
Argued October 7, 1985
Decided June 30, 1986
Full case nameDavis, et al. v. Bandemer, et al.
Citations478 U.S. 109 (more)
106 S. Ct. 2797; 92 L. Ed. 2d 85; 1986 U.S. LEXIS 122; 54 U.S.L.W. 4898
Case history
PriorBandemer v. Davis, 603 F. Supp. 1479 (S.D. Ind. 1984); probable jurisdiction noted, 470 U.S. 1083 (1985).
Holding
Claims of partisan gerrymandering were justiciable, but failed to agree on a clear standard for judicial review of those claims. The decision was later limited with respect to many of the elements directly involving issues of redistricting and political gerrymandering, but was somewhat broadened with respect to less significant ancillary procedural issues.
Court membership
Chief Justice
Warren E. Burger
Associate Justices
William J. Brennan Jr. · Byron White
Thurgood Marshall · Harry Blackmun
Lewis F. Powell Jr. · William Rehnquist
John P. Stevens · Sandra Day O'Connor
Case opinions
MajorityWhite (part II), joined by Brennan, Marshall, Blackmun, Powell, Stevens
PluralityWhite (parts I, III, IV), joined by Brennan, Marshall, Blackmun
ConcurrenceBurger
ConcurrenceO'Connor, joined by Burger, Rehnquist
Concur/dissentPowell, joined by Stevens
Laws applied
U.S. Const. amend. XIV

Davis v. Bandemer, 478 U.S. 109 (1986), is a case in which the United States Supreme Court held that claims of partisan gerrymandering were justiciable, but failed to agree on a clear standard for the judicial review of the class of claims of a political nature to which such cases belong. The decision was later limited with respect to many of the elements directly involving issues of redistricting and political gerrymandering, but was somewhat broadened with respect to less significant ancillary procedural issues. Democrats had won 51.9% of the votes, but only 43/100 seats. Democrats sued on basis of one man, one vote, however, California Democrats supported the Indiana GOP's plan.

The National Republican Committee filed an amicus brief in support of the Indiana Democrats,[1] Democrats in the California house and senate filed briefs supporting the Republican redistricting plan.[2]

Background[edit]

Democrats in the state of Indiana challenged the state's 1981 state apportionment scheme for Indiana General Assembly districts because of political gerrymandering. The Democrats argued that "the apportionment unconstitutionally diluted their votes in important districts, violating their rights."[3] Indiana Democrats used the elections of November 1982 as proof that the new plan violated the 14th amendment due to voter dilution. In both the House and the Senate Democrats won the majority of votes, but failed to have a majority of candidates win. The District Court ruled in favor of the Democrats, throwing out the old plan and calling for the creation of a new one.[4]

Decision[edit]

The Supreme Court ruled on two separate issues, first whether gerrymandering claims are justiciable and secondly, if the 1981 Indiana Reapportionment Plan was an infraction on citizen's rights to equal representation which was protected by the 14th Amendment.[5] The Court ruled 6-3 that federal courts can determine cases of partisan gerrymandering as worthy of intervention, but they also ruled 7-2 that Indiana's plan was constitutional under the Equal Protection Clause.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Brief Amicus Curiae of the Republican National Committee in Support of Appellees, Susan J. DAVIS, et al., Appellants, v. Irwin C. BANDEMER, et al., Appellees., 1985 (U.S.), 1.
  2. ^ Brief Amicus Curiae of Assembly of the State of California in Support of Appellants, Susan J. DAVIS, et al., Appellants, v. Irwin C. BANDEMER, et al., Appellees., 1985 (U.S.).
  3. ^ "Davis v. Bandemer 478 U.S. 109 (1986)". Oyez: Chicago-Kent College of Law. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
  4. ^ Bandemer v. Davis, 603 F. Supp. 1479 (S.D. Ind. 1984).
  5. ^ Davis v. Bandemer, 478 U.S. 109 (1986).
  6. ^ "Davis v. Bandemer". Ballotpedia. Retrieved 2019-03-05.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]