This Man Went to Law School So He Could Fight Md. Gerrymandering

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Maryland's 3rd, which has been likened to "blood spatter at a crime scene."
Maryland’s 3rd, which has been likened to “blood spatter at a crime scene.”

I think it’s safe to say Steve Shapiro, 55, hates Maryland’s gerrymandered congressional districts. After decades of fighting unsuccessfully to change the state’s partisan redistricting policy, even filing his own legal briefs, Shapiro left his job to attend law school to sharpen his attacks.

As a student at American University’s Washington School of Law, Shapiro has prepared a brief for the U.S. Supreme Court, which will hear his case on gerrymandering on Wednesday. As the Washington Post reports, Shapiro won’t be going it alone. His case will be argued by seasoned Supreme Court lawyer Michael B. Kimberly.

Maryland’s Democrat-controlled legislature has understandably been resistant to attempts to make redistricting fair to voters — after all, their Jackson Pollock-inspired congressional map turned a red district blue! What’s surprising is that it’s about as hard to make headway with the judiciary. Supreme Court precedent has made it difficult for courts to weigh in on the process.

Let’s hope Shapiro’s study — and Kimberly’s experience — pays off.



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