TOPEKA (KSNT) – The Kansas Supreme Court announced this morning its decisions in cases that involve state and congressional reapportioned districts around 10:30 a.m.

In a decision on Wednesday by the Kansas Supreme Court, the redrawn redistricting maps are upheld as constitutional.

The state Supreme Court declined to declare that overly partisan gerrymandering violates the Kansas Constitution. The ruling sets district boundaries less than a month before the state’s June 10 filing deadline for congressional candidates.

The state’s Republican-appointed solicitor general argued in defending the GOP-drawn map that because the state constitution doesn’t specifically mention gerrymandering or congressional redistricting, the Kansas Supreme Court should reject the legal challenges. He and other state officials said that the justices had no guidance on how to define improper political gerrymandering.

The court addressed Case No. 125,083: Petition of Derek Schmidt, Attorney General, to Determine Validity of Substitute for Senate Bill 563 Provisions Reapportioning State Legislative Districts, and Case No. 125,092: Faith Rivera, et al, Tom Alonzo, et al, and Susan Frick, et al, v. Scott Schwab, Kansas Secretary of State; Michael Abbott, Wyandotte County Election Commissioner; and Jamie Shew, Douglas County Clerk.

Republican leaders said their map was a fair way to rebalance the population in congressional districts after a 10-year demographic shift.

Democrat Sharice Davids said she looks forward to introducing herself to the new voters in the Third District but cautioned Kansans to stay positive if they feel their voice was not heard.

“From rushed hearings to backroom deals for votes, the redistricting process did not instill a sense of transparency or confidence in the people of Kansas. I hope that although many feel their voice was not heard, they do not feel as though their voice does not matter,” said Davids.

The Supreme Court on Monday heard oral arguments on state legislative maps and a congressional map. The cases are on an “expedited schedule,” according to a spokeswoman for the court.

The map, called “Ad Astra” was ruled unconstitutional in a district court. In court, opponents of the map argued that it was gerrymandered and diluted the minority voice in one of the state’s most diverse areas.

The map also moved the liberal northeastern Kansas city of Lawrence – a Democratic stronghold that is home to the main University of Kansas campus and is only about 40 miles (64 kilometers) west of Kansas City – out of the 2nd District. Instead, the city of 95,000 has been added to the already sprawling 1st District, which is dominated by small conservative communities in central and western Kansas.

125092 by Michael K. Dakota on Scribd

125083 by Michael K. Dakota on Scribd