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Redistricting lawsuit relocated

More preliminaries.

A panel of Austin-based federal judges assigned to hear a redistricting lawsuit filed by prominent Travis County Democrats and the city of Austin has decided that case should be transferred to San Antonio’s federal court. Most of the already filed redistricting cases will be heard here.

Two judges supported transferring the case to San Antonio, while U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel issued a five-page dissent that blasted the move.

“Simply put, I see no good sense in combining all redistricting cases complaining of all redistricting plans adopted by the Texas Legislature into one matter,” Yeakel wrote.

The move sets the stage for another consolidation of the redistricting lawsuits that have been filed against the redistricting plans passed by the Texas Legislature.

According to the story, State Rep. Trey Martinez-Fischer was happy with this ruling. The state wants to “split” the battle between San Antonio and Austin, with data-related stuff taking place in Austin and witness testimony in San Antonio. I’m not exactly sure how that will work. Fortunately, it turns out there’s a site called TxRedistricting.org that’s following the ins and outs of the litigation, so hopefully I’ll have a better idea going forward. In the meantime, there’s also an argument about whether legislative staffers, who likely know quite a bit about what their bosses were up to during all of this, can be called to testify, and it’s not clear if the latest ruling helps or hurts Rep. Lloyd Doggett.

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