NM Republicans score legal win in Dem gerrymandering case

On Tuesday, the New Mexico Republican Party (RPNM) announced it had scored a legal win in the Fifth Judicial District Court over Democrats in a battle to overturn Democrats’ gerrymandered congressional maps. 

Judge Fred Van Soelen denied the defendants’ request to dismiss the case, saying RPNM can “continue its litigation and claims under the state Constitution,” according to a press release.

“(The) Plaintiffs complaint makes a strong, well-developed case that Senate Bill 1 is a partisan gerrymander created in an attempt to dilute Republican votes in Congressional races in New Mexico. They make a strong, well-developed case that Senate Bill 1 does not follow traditional districting principles, including a lack of compactness, lack of preservation of communities of interest, and failure to take into consideration political and geographic boundaries,” ruled Van Soelen.

RPNM’s news release noted, “While the Court ruled there is not enough time to redraw maps or interfere with the 2022 Primary and General Elections, the ruling allows RPNM to continue to move through the courts to change the Congressional maps so that they will provide equal protection under the law and fair and just representation.”

“We are pleased with the Court’s ruling and that the Court understands that we have important and legitimate claims under the Constitution,” said RPNM Chairman Steve Pearce. 

“These Congressional maps were ramrodded through the Democrat-led legislature for political gain. This is not a political issue but a fairness issue—we want to ensure that all the voices of New Mexicans are protected and represented by these maps, regardless of their political beliefs. The Court recognizes that we have strong evidence to support our claim of blatant illegal gerrymandering that rips apart communities of interest and disenfranchises voters across the state. RPNM will always stand for fairness, the rule of law, and the core principles of our democracy.”

Previously, the Legislature forewent reasonably drawn maps to adopt radically gerrymandered maps drawn by the George Soros-funded dark money group Center for Civic Policy (CCP). These maps were rammed through the Legislature with little to no debate from the public in a closed-door gerrymandering session where only those who wore masks and were jabbed were allowed entrance.


1 thought on “NM Republicans score legal win in Dem gerrymandering case”

  1. The Court has ruled and the Republican Party of New Mexico is declaring victory. I would advise that it may be just a bit premature to begin organizing the “ticket-tape” parade. I think that it is important to review just exactly what it was the the court ruled upon; what it did not rule upon, and where the case goes from here. This case, originally filed in January 2022, took the better part of three months just to find a court and a judge who would begin the process of adjudicating the matter. The matter that was decided yesterday was on a motion, filed by the defendants, the State of New Mexico and Governor M. L. Grisham to dismiss the case against the defendants based upon an argument that plaintiffs argument was without “merit”. On this basis, the court disagreed with the defendant’s argument, refusing the motion to dismiss the case, and allowing plaintiff to “move forward” with their claim. The court did grant that plaintiff presented a compelling enough argument to allow the court to conclude that plaintiff may be able to prevail, if, and when, the case may be decided upon the merits. The court also mentioned that regardless of the ultimate outcome, this matter would not have any effect upon the 2022 primary nor general elections, and that the maps that were passed by the legislature and subsequently signed by the governor will be used for the balance of the 2022 election cycle. I would opine that with this decision of the court any mention of “victory” would ring slightly hollow. It is a shame that in a matter such as this, with the significant implication concerning our “representative democracy” that our laws do not allow the Supreme Court of New Mexico to have original jurisdiction eliminating the need for the lower courts to have to become involved in the first place. Ultimately this case will be decided by the Supreme Court of New Mexico, so why not just “fast-track” it there right now. I think that I would also have to ask the state party, even though I’m reasonable sure that I know the standard “spin” answer, do they support, in an effort to avoid looking somewhat like hypocrites, the suit filed in Florida by the Democratic Party charging Governor DeSantis and the Florida legislature of “gerrymandering” the Florida districts to benefit the Florida Republican candidates and voters? What say you state party?

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