In a victory for Democrats in Virginia, the Supreme Court held Monday that the Republican-led Virginia House of Delegates did not have the legal right to challenge a lower court opinion that struck several district maps they had drawn as an unconstitutional racial gerrymander.
This means court-ordered maps that favored Democrats will continue to be used.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote the opinion for a 5-4 court, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Neil Gorsuch.
Because the Supreme Court dismissed the challenge on standing grounds, justices did not rule if the maps constitute an unconstitutional racial gerrymander.
"One House of its bicameral legislature cannot alone continue the litigation against the will of its partners in the legislative process," Ginsburg wrote.
"If the State had designated the House to represent its interests, and if the House had in fact carried out that mission, we would agree that the House could stand in for the State. Neither precondition, however, is met here. "