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Paul, Weiss Secures Historic Win for Louisiana Voters in Congressional Redistricting Case

As reported by The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN and other news outlets, Paul, Weiss, together with co-counsel NAACP Legal Defense Fund and the American Civil Liberties Union, secured a second majority-Black congressional district in Louisiana in compliance with the Voting Rights Act. The result comes after nearly two years of litigation on behalf of our clients, the Louisiana NAACP, the Power Coalition for Equity and Justice, and a group of individual Louisiana voters.

Paul, Weiss and co-counsel filed a complaint in March 2022 challenging the state’s enacted congressional redistricting plan as violative of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. Although approximately one-third of Louisiana’s voting-age population is Black, only one out of six districts in the state’s plan had a Black majority. In June 2022, after a five-day evidentiary hearing, Chief U.S. District Judge Shelly Dick of the Middle District of Louisiana issued a 152-page decision granting our request for a preliminary injunction against the state’s plan, holding that the map diluted the votes of Black Louisianans and likely violated the Voting Rights Act. The defendants sought a stay from the U.S. Supreme Court, and the Court stayed the case for almost one year. After the case resumed in June 2023, the Fifth Circuit endorsed the district court’s holding that the plaintiffs were likely to succeed on the merits of their claims.

Earlier this month, the Louisiana Legislature enacted a new congressional map including two majority-Black districts, and the governor signed the new map into law on January 22. In introducing the special session, the governor stated that the state had “exhausted all legal remedies,” and that the “courts have mandated that the state of Louisiana redraw [its] congressional districts” to include two majority-Black districts.

The Paul, Weiss team was led by litigation counsel Jonathan Hurwitz and associates Amitav Chakraborty and Adam Savitt, and supervised by litigation partners Robert Atkins and Yahonnes Cleary. The team also included associates Arielle McTootle, Robert Klein, Neil Chitrao, Cole Rabinowitz and Bridget Warlea.

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