Supreme Court Clarifies Role of Technology and “One Person, One Vote” Rule


With the assistance of modern technology, state Congressional districts can be divided down to a single person, seemingly satisfying the “one person, one vote” requirement. However, as the U.S. Supreme Court recently highlighted, mathematical equality is not required to ensure that a redistricting plan will pass constitutional scrutiny.

In Tennant v. Jefferson County Commission, the Supreme Court held that West Virginia’s 2011 congressional redistricting plan does not violate the “one person, one vote” principle. The per curium decision confirmed that states should still be given some flexibility in applying the standard and that “zero variance” is not the new test of constitutionality, despite advances in mapping technology.

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