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Redistricting maps trial begins in Nashville to stop approval of alleged "gerrymanderred maps"

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit claim that the proposed House and Senate maps create an unfair advantage for the Republican party in the electoral college.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Tennessee court will begin the Wygant v. Lee redistricting trial that challenges mapping that affects voting and voter representation Monday, April 17.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit claim that Tennessee Republicans, Gov. Bill Lee and the Tennessee General Assembly supermajority house excessively divided counties and cities on Senate maps, creating Senate districts that create an unfair advantage for the Republican party in the electoral college.

According to the Constitution, Senate Districts are supposed to be numbered consecutively in counties that stretch across multiple districts.

The plaintiffs claim that the House and Senate maps proposed by Republicans in 2022 are not consecutively numbered, and the maps create four senatorial districts within Davidson County that are numbered 17, 19, 20, and 21. The proposed mapping divides 30 counties.

Sen. Raumesh Akbari said the maps are an attempt to "gerrymander" or to manipulate electoral district boundaries to ultimately gain a distinctive advantage.

"Democracy depends on fair maps that keep our communities whole and reflect who we are as a state. Tennesseans deserve nothing less," Sen. Raumesh Akbari said.

Othe Democratic Tennessee Senators support Akbari's viewpoints on the proposed mapping of Davidson county.

"Republicans divided our communities and rigged our electoral maps in a naked and unconstitutional power grab," Senate Democratic Caucus Chairwoman Sen. London Lamar said. "We warned the supermajority these maps illegally diminish the voting power of communities throughout the state. Now these rigged maps get their day in court and we pray the people and our democracy prevail."

The plaintiffs in the suit are requesting that the judge blcock the proposed House and Senate maps, requiring Tennessee legislature to redraw maps that maintain compliance with current constitutional district zoning guidelines.

The trial will be held in Nashville in Davidson County Chancery Court.

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