Pennsylvania Republican Wants to Impeach Justices Who Threw Out Gerrymandered Map

by | February 7, 2018

By Jessica Chia

A Pennsylvania state representative called for five Democratic justices to be impeached after they struck down the state's congressional map for gerrymandering.

The state high court ruled last month that the 18 districts violated Pennsylvania's constitution because they unfairly benefited Republicans.

And U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito on Monday rejected emergency appeals from Republicans to block an order from the state supreme court to devise new congressional districts.

Rep. Cris Dush sent out a statement on Monday calling for legislation to impeach the five Justices who threw out the congressional map drawn in 2011.

"The five Justices who signed this order...engaged in misbehavior in office. Wherefore, each is guilty of an impeachable offense warranting removal from office and disqualification to hold any office or trust or profit under this Commonwealth," Dush wrote.

The state's Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati, and House Speaker Mike Turzai also issued a joint statement saying they "may be compelled to pursue further legal action in federal court."

Lawmakers and Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf have three weeks to submit a replacement plan, after which the state justices might draw up their own map.

The U.S. Supreme Court typically does not review state court decisions based on a state's constitution.

But the Republicans asked the high court to make an exception and Alito handles emergency appeals from Pennsylvania.

A new map might help Democrats in the upcoming midterm elections.

"I think a fair map in Pennsylvania can give Democrats an opportunity to win up to five seats in Pennsylvania," Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez told NPR.

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